It appears the Vic Beasley’s second second chance of 2020 is at hand.
Coach Jon Gruden indicated Friday that the former Tennessee Titans outside linebacker has an opportunity to make his debut for the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday when they face the New York Jets.
“Perhaps Vic Beasley will play this week,” Gruden said. “We’re going to take a good look at our options. But Beasley has had a good week. He has seemed to pick up our system fast.”
Gruden singled out Beasley as an option related to the fact that defensive tackle Maliek Collins was placed on injured reserve earlier this week. He also noted that the status of another defensive lineman, Maurice Hurst, is undetermined.
Beasley is listed as a defensive end by Las Vegas, which employs a four-man front as its base defense.
The Raiders (6-5) have 12 sacks in 11 games. Defensive end Maxx Crosby has half of that total, and no one else has more than one and a half. Jacksonville, with 11, is the only NFL team with fewer this season.
Beasley had zero sacks and quarterback pressures in five games for the Titans before he was released on Nov. 4. He was credited with three tackles and one forced fumble.
Tennessee was expected to provide a fresh start for the eighth overall pick in 2105, an All-Pro and the NFL’s leader in sacks during his second NFL season (2016) who underwhelmed in his final three years with the Atlanta Falcons (2017-19). Signed as a free agent early in the offseason, he instead failed to make any sort of meaningful impact.
The Raiders signed him to their practice squad on Nov. 23.
Under rules in place this year, Las Vegas won’t necessarily need to promote Beasley to their active roster in order for him to play. He could be designated a gameday elevation, under which he would automatically return to the practice squad the day after the game.
“He’s got a really good first step quickness,” Raiders defensive coordinator Paul Guenther said earlier in the week of Beasley. “He’s really smart. He’s picked up the playbook. He adds some speed to our front. He doesn’t say a lot. He’s a very coachable guy.
“So, he’s been a pleasure to add. Hopefully, we can get him up and running here in short order.”