The NFL’s free-agency season begins this week, and one player the Raiders reportedly have intense interest in is Rams linebacker Cory Littleton.
Littleton, a former undrafted free agent out of Washington, joined the Rams in 2016 and has blossomed into a fine player over the past two seasons. The 6-foot-3, 228-pounder is rangy and fast and has built a reputation as a playmaker, with five interceptions and two forced fumbles over the past two seasons, along with 7.5 sacks.
In 2019 he had 134 total tackles following 125 in 2018, his first as a starter.
The Raiders have holes to fill at linebacker for 2020, and Littleton would make the Raiders much more athletic at the position.
Vic Tafur of the Athletic reports both the Raiders and Packers “are going to be all over” Littleton when the free-agent discussion period opens Monday.
Recently, Kristopher Knox of Bleacher Report suggested Littleton would be a perfect addition for the Raiders.
Knox noted the Raiders ranked 25th in the NFL in pass defense and Littleton would improve them immediately as he ranks as one of the league’s best linebackers in coverage. He had nine passes defensed in 2019.
“He could also be an asset” for the Raiders’ run defense, too, wrote Knox.
Marcus Mosher of RaidersWire noted that Littleton’s signing in free agency will come with a bonus. “If the Raiders were able to secure a player such as Littleton in free agency, that would allow them to select the best players available at picks No. 12 and No. 19,” he wrote. “While they could certainly still draft another linebacker with one of those selections, their hands wouldn’t be forced into any picks.”