In the team’s Week 1 opener against the Carolina Panthers in 2021, the Raiders started two rookie receivers in Henry Ruggs III and Bryan Edwards. Both players made a few plays, but it was Ruggs who had the better opening game and season.
Entering Year 2, the Raiders are relying on both players to make big leaps as they will begin the season as the starters once again. But which player will have the better season? It all depends on who you ask.
In a recent article by ESPN’s 32 beat writers, they were all asked to give a bold prediction heading into the season. For the Raiders, Paul Guttierrez predicted that it would be Edwards who would lead the team in receiving yards. Here is a snippet of his thoughts on the two young receivers going into their sophomore seasons:
“Henry Ruggs is the first-round pick from last year and the headliner, but (Bryan) Edwards had an outstanding 2020 camp and was ticketed for a bigger role than you think before injuries derailed him.
The big, 6-foot-3 third-rounder from last April’s draft projects as the “X” receiver in the Raiders’ offense, and both Carr and coach Jon Gruden are enamored with the mismatches they can create with him.”
Edwards has drawn praise from just about everyone this offseason, including head coach Jon Gruden. But can he finally roll that offseason hype into production during the regular season? If the Raiders want to have success on offense, they are going to need Edwards to make the next step.
To answer the question in the headline; yes. Edwards should see more targets than Ruggs and should be the more consistent receiver for Las Vegas. While Ruggs is likely to make more “splash” players, it will likely be Edwards who leads this receiving corps in receptions, yards and touchdowns in 2021.
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