Andrus Peat Sought Saints Exit; Raiders Making O-Line Changes

Andrus Peat spent nine seasons with the Saints, the last four attached to a contract he signed as a free agent in 2020. Peat played out what became a four-year deal and signed a one-year, $2MM deal with the Raiders shortly after the draft.

The Saints are believed to have shown interest in another Peat contract, but’s Nick Underhill writes he preferred a fresh start elsewhere. Peat figures to vie for a starting job in Las Vegas, while New Orleans is holding a competition to see who will start at guard opposite Cesar Ruiz.

The Saints initially signed Peat to a five-year deal back in 2020, but they voided the former first-rounder’s final year and gave him a pay cut in 2023. Peat, 30, missed 17 games due to injury from 2021-22 but ended up being the team’s replacement for struggling first-rounder Trevor Penning at left tackle last season.

Not much interest came his way this offseason, which also included a Titans visit. Pro Football Focus ranked Peat 56th among tackles last season; the former Pro Bowl guard will attempt to rebound with the Raiders. Though, Las Vegas is far from certain to turn to the mid-offseason pickup as a first-stringer. The team made some moves to bolster its front after multiple low-key offseasons regarding this position group.

In addition to Peat, the Raiders added Cody Whitehair in free agency and then used both their Day 2 picks on blockers — second-rounder Jackson Powers-Johnson, third-rounder DJ Glaze. The Raiders may view Peat as a swingman, making it rather interesting he would select Las Vegas as his free agency destination. It is unclear, however, if New Orleans made an offer. Given the Saints’ situation at tackle and left guard, it would make sense for the team to bring Peat back. But the sides separated. The 10th-year blocker is now on an O-line set for significant change.

Kolton Miller and re-signed center Andre James will reprise their roles, but the other three positions stand to see change from 2023. The Raiders are shifting two-year left guard Dylan Parham to the right side, per the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s Vincent Bonsignore, while Thayer Munford is the favorite to replace Jermaine Eluemunor at right tackle. Eluemunor signed a two-year, $14MM Giants deal in March.

A 2022 third-round pick, Parham logged 110 snaps at right guard as a rookie. But he has primarily played on the left side as a pro. Munford pushed Eluemunor during the Raiders’ 2023 training camp, but the veteran remained the Silver and Black’s right tackle when available. He also saw time at left tackle, filling in for Miller, who missed four games. PFF viewed Munford’s work positively, particularly in the run game, last season. This will still be a big jump for a former seventh-round pick.

Peat’s tackle history in the NFL has mostly come on the left side; he has logged all of 80 snaps at RT (78 of those as a rookie in 2015) as a pro. Glaze, who also could settle in as the Raiders’ swing tackle, will be part of the team’s RT battle as well, Bonsignore adds.

The Raiders are expected to use Powers-Johnson at left guard, but he missed much of the team’s OTA sessions, Bonsignore adds. Powers-Johnson played center at Oregon last season, replacing 2023 Broncos seventh-rounder Alex Forsyth as Bo Nix‘s snapper and winning the 2023 Rimington Award (given to Division I-FBS’ top center). The Raiders, who re-signed James to a three-year deal worth $24MM, are converting their second-round pick to guard. Powers-Johnson played 350 snaps at right guard as a sophomore in 2022.

Las Vegas, which did not re-sign primary 2023 RG Greg Van Roten, suddenly features both experience and a collection of early-round picks up front. It will be interesting to see how the team uses its host of offseason additions, as Peat (102) and Whitehair (118) have combined for 220 career starts. New Raiders OC Luke Getsy coaching Whitehair for two seasons in Chicago makes his status as a projected backup — as of now, at least — rather interesting as well.

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