Last season’s linebacking corps was a weak link for the Raiders, but the unit already has been strengthened with almost a month to go before the NFL draft.
After signing ex-Bengal Vontaze Burfict recently, the Raiders on Thursday signed Brandon Marshall, a longtime starter for the AFC West-rival Denver Broncos.
Marshall, 29, signed a one-year deal.
The former fifth-round pick from Nevada – who played his first season with Jacksonville in 2012 – has been a starter at outside linebacker the past five seasons in Denver. His season was cut short by a knee injury in 2018 (he played just seven games) and the Broncos decided to let him go with two years remaining on his contract.
But Marshall, as recently as 2017, had 106 tackles and three sacks while playing all 16 games. His best season was in 2014, when he had 119 tackles, two sacks, an interception, two forced fumbles and nine passes defensed.
His signing means the Raiders could go into Game 1 of the 2019 season with three veterans at linebacker: holdover Tahir Whitehead in the middle flanked by Burfict and Marshall.
Marshall, a key defensive starter on the Broncos’ Super Bowl-winning team from the 2015 season, posted on Instagram a thank you to Denver fans, saying it had “been a beautiful 6 years.” By signing with Oakland, he’ll get to play his ex-teammates twice a year.
Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reported Marshall’s deal will be worth up to $4.1 million. If he should stay with the team beyond this upcoming season, he’d get a chance to play in his hometown of Las Vegas.