The Las Vegas Raiders need to become winners, fast. Coach Jon Gruden is in his fourth year back with the club and has yet to make the playoffs, and this is the first year fans will be inside Allegiant Stadium on Sundays, sure to voice their displeasure if Gruden’s squad performs poorly.
Luckily for the Raiders, they just brought a proven winner to the club. Linebacker K.J. Wright will make his Las Vegas debut on Monday night against the Ravens after Las Vegas signed him to a one-year deal last week.
Gruden said he watched Wright thrive on his former team, the Seahawks, and his new acquisition has brought a winning mentality — the same one that helped Seattle win a Super Bowl in 2014 — with him to Las Vegas.
“There’s a certain skill level that this man has. There’s also a certain playing style, a certain vibe that he brings in the locker room,” Gruden said of Wright during media availability on Thursday. “And he looks good now. He understands our system — he’s getting reacclimated to the new terminology. Nothing stays the same. But our players, they respond to him. They gravitate toward him.”
Bringing in a player that has done it all in the NFL and succeeded, as Wright has, is perhaps the best way to instill a winning mentality within a team. Contending for Super Bowls is all Wright knows. That mindset is surely ingrained in him now, conveyed confidently for all in the Raiders locker room to see.
But first things first. Gruden and the Raiders need to make the playoffs. But also first things first: the Raiders must perform well against the Ravens on Monday Night Football, led on defense by Wright. That way, the vibe that Wright brought with him can begin to take hold in the Las Vegas locker room.
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