Raiders OL Lester Cotton favorite to win starting right guard job

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With the retirement of Denzelle Good, both starting guard jobs are officially up for grabs for the Las Vegas Raiders. The expectation is that John Simpson will likely win one of the jobs and rookie Dylan Parham will eventually crack the lineup.

However, that still leaves one job open going into Week 1. So who has been taking those snaps so far in practice and who should we expect to see at right guard when the Raiders open the season against the Chargers?

In a recent article by Tashan Reed of The Athletic, he believes that former Alabama offensive lineman Lester Cotton is the favorite to win the right guard job. Here is what he had to say about fourth-year veteran:

“Cotton has taken the vast majority of the snaps at right guard since OTAs. The Raiders re-signed Jordan Meredith after Good retired, but he won’t make the final roster. With Good out of the picture, Cotton is the clear favorite to win the job going into the season.

Cotton was a two-year starter at guard at Alabama but went undrafted in 2019 and signed with the Raiders. He’s bounced back and forth between the practice squad and roster since then and has only taken five offensive snaps since entering the league, but he’s displayed growth during OTAs and training camp.”

Cotton turned 26 in February, but he’s only played five offensive snaps in his career. It would be quite the step for him to go from on and off the roster all year to the team’s Week 1 starting guard.

However, the Raiders have been very impressed with his play and improvement this offseason. If he can continue that positive momentum during padded practices, we should start getting used to the idea that he will be on the field in Week 1, protecting Derek Carr.

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