The Las Vegas Raiders traded for Davante Adams last Friday, and he’s ready to try and take his favorite team to a a title.
The pressure is on Davante Adams.
As the highest-paid receiver in NFL history, Adams is stepping into the Las Vegas Raiders after being acquired from the Green Bay Packers for first- and second-round picks on Friday night. Adams, 29, is trying to maintain his status as the top receiver in football, something he became over his last few seasons with Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
For Las Vegas, it’s an all-in move. After making the playoffs at 10-7 and then losing to the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC Wild Card round, the Raiders are trying to improve further in the league’s toughest division, the AFC West. With the Kansas City Chiefs as the perennial favorite and both the Los Angeles Chargers and Denver Broncos clearly improved, Las Vegas added Adams to an offense already with quarterback Derek Carr — a great friend and college teammate of Adams — receiver Hunter Renfrow and tight end Darren Waller.
The thought is clear from general manager Dave Ziegler: our offense can now compete with other high-octane AFC offenses. With Adams, the theory is a realistic reality.
And for Adams, a former Fresno State star who grew up rooting for the Silver and Black, it’s a dream come true. On Tuesday afternoon, he spoke in a press conference about his long-standing love of the Raiders, via NFL.com:
“I grew up in East Palo Alto (California). I was a Raiders fan my whole life, so it is a dream to be a Raider, man. It’s a dream come true. In the third-grade yearbook, I said I want to be an NFL star or an NBA star, and I was wearing a Charles Woodson jersey at the time. It’s been documented forever, so I guess you could say it’s meant to be.”
Now, the Raiders and Adams face increased pressure. Adams is on a record deal and cost two premium picks. He can’t afford to backslide without Rodgers, especially considering his established relationship with Carr.
As for Las Vegas, it’s time to make a move in the loaded AFC West, potentially bypassing the Chiefs who have defensive issues of their own to deal with.
Making the playoffs won’t be enough for the Raiders, just as being an All-Pro isn’t enough for Adams. It’s about getting to the postseason and doing damage, with No. 17 being a huge part of the reason why.