Back during Raiders minicamp, Gus Bradley told us Amik Robertson was considered one of three corners fighting for the starting slot corner position.
After Nate Hobbs’ outstanding performance against the Los Angeles Rams during the week two preseason game, he’s all but locked up the starting nickel role, which means Robertson, who has primarily been taking reps at the outside corner the past few weeks, is no longer competing to start at the nickel.
“[Amik Robertson] is a guy last year we tried to make a nickel corner and that’s a hard position as you know in this league with all the Jet Sweeps,” Gruden said during Wednesday’s presser.
“If that Jet Sweep starts on the right and jets to the left, there’s a good chance, you gotta bump into the box and be a linebacker. And I think Amik looked at that a little bit differently when [Richie] Incognito was blocking him in the box. But now as an outside corner, you see what he is. You can see the skillset that he has. He’s played better, he’s gotten more confidence. Not that he can’t be a nickel because he has worked in there, but he’s clearly at home on the outside.”
Robertson has had himself two really good games playing on the outside the past two weeks. Among the 92 corners who have played at least 50 snaps during the 2021 preseason, Robertson currently ranks as the No. 5 corner with an overall grade of 80.9.
While watching Robertson on the outside, it’s clear he looks more confident. In a play against the Seahawks, he read a quick screen and tackled the player behind the line, for a loss of yards:
Robertson and Damon Arnette are considered the primary backups on the outside. When healthy, Isaiah Johnson will also compete as an outside corner.
With Robertson moving to the outside, the question now becomes who will be the primary backup nickel behind Hobbs. Nevin Lawson is suspended for the first two weeks of the season, so he will be unavailable.
If Robertson can play both the inside and outside, he will be that much more valuable for Gus Bradley and his defense, which could all but guarantee him a roster spot.
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