Raiders Have Two Veteran Defensive Players About to Take a Back Seat to Rookies

The Raiders have two veteran defensive players that will likely see a significant drop in playing time in the weeks ahead.

Cory Littleton hasn’t been playing well and Carl Nassib has been dealing with a lingering knee injury. But the bigger issue for both players is that incoming rookies are coming hard after their jobs.

Third-round pick Malcolm Koonce has only been on the active roster for two games this year and he tallied sacks in both of them. He didn’t play a lot in either game, but Koonce was among the Raiders’ top-graded defensive players in both games.

Teammates have taken notice and Koonce is going to be on the field more soon.

Anthony Galaviz on Twitter: “Johnathan Hankins on Malcolm Koonce: “To me, he looks like a starter.” #Raiders / Twitter”

Johnathan Hankins on Malcolm Koonce: “To me, he looks like a starter.” #Raiders

Koonce might take a few snaps away from Maxx Crosby and Yannick Ngakoue (to keep them fresh), but the biggest impact on playing time will probably be felt by Nassib when he comes back.

As for Littleton, his playing time has already begun to take a hit. He saw 19 defensive snaps against the Chiefs and watched rookie Divine Deablo play 52 in the game.

Deablo, another third-round pick, has earned higher PFF grades than Littleton in each of the last two games. Just as importantly, Deablo sounds like a player ready to take on a leadership role in the locker room, too…

You hate to speculate, but it’s hard not to wonder if one of the players Deablo was referring to might have been Littleton.

And take a look at this video from The Athletic’s Ted Nguyen. It’s an excellent breakdown of what Deablo has been doing this year.

twitter: @raidersbeat


14 thoughts on “Raiders Have Two Veteran Defensive Players About to Take a Back Seat to Rookies

  1. Cory Littleton is a half hearted tackler. I saw it all last year and again in the KC game. Sometimes he goes after the football with no regard for making the tackle and misses both. We should really cut him loose or see if the Rams want him back.

    1. Another Raider free agent signing that didn’t pan out. This is WHY the team must replace Mayock and get someone that can improve the draft process, as we’ve missed on too many of our high draft picks.

  2. It is good to see some actual movement toward giving the younger players an opportunity to get the experience in the game. Some players are playing to not get hurt and playing to
    fulfill and maximize big contracts without getting injured. So, if youth is ready to go give them green light at this point. I would say.

  3. About fucking time. Littleton hasn’t done much since he was signed. Noth8ng personal with nassab but he’s not much to be missed either. Outside of week 1 you forget he’s on the roster.

  4. THIS is exactly what should be happening, young hungry players pushing their butts off to get playing time and make a name for themselves. In fact, that is exactly how the veteran players got to where they are now. It’s the inevitability and evolution of the game and progression of any team.

    Every year teams draft young players hoping that they will make a sudden impact, well that is what we have happening here. These young guys are first year players and the absolute best thing that could possibly happen to the Raiders is that they find and play more of them at more positions, ex-post haste.

  5. I think Malcolm Koonce and Divine Deablo have secured spots on next year’s Raiders roster. As far as Carl Nassib and Cory Littleton are going to be on the outside looking in. Mark Davis knows what players on the Raiders are going to be released with this entire coaching staff.

  6. People think the game was rescheduled to help the Browns or to make more money for the NFL because of a more competitive game. Everyone is wrong. The Browns get screwed by the NFL and the referees just like the Raiders. Here’s the real real. The NFL doesn’t give a **** about the Browns and they HATE the Raiders, this game was moved because it gives a competitive edge to the Denver Donkeys. POINT BLANK. The Donkeys are next up after Cleveland with this move it gives the Raiders a short week to prepare and gives the Donkeys a better chance to win. Cleveland and the Raiders are teams the NFL don’t like/care about. But they always help/benefit the Donkeys in every aspect, be that the season scheduling just look at who they play and where. The Donkeys just like Kansas Shitty always have easier schedules the tougher teams at home, referee call breaks & non calls, what position they draft. The NFL and the media always explains how it’s always fair (Bullshit). This reschedule has nothing to do with helping Cleveland. ANYONE who thinks differently also believes the country is heading in the right direction. Fools.

  7. Littleton has been a huge disappointment since we signed him. Diablo has earned more time on the field. Nassib is a different story. He has played well at times, but Koontz looks like a difference maker right now and Carl isn’t healthy. We need to see what we have on the roster going into the off-season.

  8. Unfortunately they won’t be able to cut Littleton because of the large dead cap that it would create. Almost his entire 2022 salary. Maybe they could trade him back to his old team , where he found success, just like they did with Trent Brown. Definitely dump him for nothing if you can. Deablo is the future at the weakside linebacker position.

  9. Counting this year. what has stayed the same the last 8 years and yet the Raiders keep losing? Times up. Our QB position. Yes this year our O- line has been attrocious. But in some of those years we had a top 5 O-line and was still losing. When are we going to dump this dog? Hell we didn’t give TP 6 OR Jarmarcus Russell this much time. Why are we fooling around with Carr still? Package Carr and Josh Jacobs and our number # 1 to whoever has the first pick, and get a QB with the first pick in the draft. Also get rid of the whole coaching staff and this time hire a coach from the college ranks. The players have quit and are just mailing it in. Yes our defense is crap, but so is our QB play. Lets move on, and get a real QB.

  10. You know when they say next man up? Well Malcom and Devine took it to heart! They deserve to start, albeit Nasib was due to injury but anyone every hear of Wally Pip?? Just sayin’

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