Raiders Sign Round 1 DE Tyree Wilson

The list of 2023 first-rounders who have inked their rookie deals in recent days continues to grow. The Raiders announced on Friday that they have sign defensive end Tyree Wilson to his first NFL pact, which is four years in length and includes a fifth-year team option.

Wilson was long considered one of the top defensive prospects in this year’s class, and ranked among the best edge rushing options. While Alabama’s Will Anderson was generally seen as the safer prospect, momentum emerged during the pre-draft process that the Texans may have had Wilson rated higher given his ceiling. That put the latter in the conversation to go No. 2 overall, but Houston ultimately drafted quarterback C.J. Stroud with their top pick, then traded up to No. 3 to add Anderson.

Medicals were seen as one reason why the Texans shied away from Wilson, who was limited to 10 games in 2022 by a foot injury. Despite the missed time, the former Red Raider posted seven sacks for the second straight season, adding a career-high 61 stops and 14 tackles for loss. Those totals helped earn him first-team All-Big 12 and All-American honors from a number of outlets, and cement his status as a first-round lock.

Vegas did extensive homework on the top quarterbacks in this year’s class, despite the presence of three QB-needy teams ahead of them in the first-round order and the signing of veteran Jimmy Garoppolo in the offseason. As expected, three signal-callers were selected in the first four picks, which left the Raiders with a number of options to consider by the time they were on the clock. A trade offer from the Cardinals for No. 7 was not accepted, meaning Vegas stayed put rather than dropping to the 12th spot in the order.

Doing so left Wilson available, and the Raiders were happy to select him. He should have an immediate impact on a defense which struggled across the board in 2022, including in the pass-rush department. Wilson could fill a rotational role behind Maxx Crosby and Chandler Jones, the latter of whom only has guaranteed money remaining on his contract for one more season. If he reaches his potential, Wilson could soon find himself as a full-time starter as the Raiders look to take a needed step forward in their front seven.

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