Raiders Are Off to a Fast Start in Free Agency

Adding former Rams safety Joyner to newcomers Antonio Brown and Trent Brown makes Raiders stronger already

The Raiders are not wasting time.

Over the past three days, Oakland has traded for star wide receiver Antonio Brown and agreed to terms with offensive tackle Trent Brown, who helped protect Tom Brady last season as the Patriots won yet another Super Bowl.

Now, they’re reportedly adding a key player from the Pats’ Super Bowl opponent, safety Lamarcus Joyner of the Los Angeles Rams.

Joyner, 28, was a second-round pick of the Rams in 2014 out of Florida State who played cornerback his first three seasons. He was switched to free safety in 2017 and responded with three interceptions and 49 tackles in 12 games that year. In 2018 he started 15 games and had an interception, 78 tackles and a sack.

His addition should help stabilize the back end of the Raiders defense. As Grant Gordon of NFL.com reported: “A versatile get for the Raiders, Joyner previously played cornerback and can cover deep balls and come up strong against the run.”

The Raiders last season ranked No. 32 overall in pass defense and were 20th against deep passes, so Joyner as a roaming free safety could help tighten deep coverage. Joyner also could play slot cornerback in some situations.

The Rams put the franchise tag on him in 2017, but he was allowed to walk into free agency this offseason.

According to ESPN, the Raiders have signed him to a four-year deal worth as much as $42 million.

With plenty of room still under the salary cap and more holes to fill, the Raiders probably aren’t done in the free-agent market.

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