Abram, a tone setter who is willing to put a hat on anyone, has landed in the perfect situation with the silver and black. The “Black Hole,” as deemed by Raider Nation is one of, if not the most rabid, intimidating, and loyal fanbase in football. Abram, whose confidence is through the roof is a day one starter. He will be bringing to Oakland, a Mississippi State resume that includes 170 total tackles, 14 for loss, five sacks, two interceptions and three forced fumbles over the course of two years. Abram jumps off the screen, as his winning attitude and relentless motor will go hand in hand under the stewardship of defensive coordinator Paul Guenther.
While Abram can cover sideline to sideline with speed, Guenther is sure to improve his tackling in the open field on a consistent basis. As he played in the SEC, Abram went toe-to-toe with many of the best offensive talents in the college game. In doing so, Abram’s standout performance came against Arkansas in his senior season. Abram’s stat line read 12 total tackles, 3.5 for loss, 1.5 sacks, a forced and recovered fumble, as well as two quarterback hits.
In the Raiders’ first round selection of Abram, Oakland knew what it wanted, toughness and leadership in the defensive backfield. Abram stands at six feet and 215 pounds with athleticism. Oakland has been devoid of their tough and intimidating label for years, as Abram can bring it back.
Though consistency will be addressed from the get-go, Abram should fill the stat line throughout his rookie season. His numbers may not be the highest in one particular category, but, as seen in Abram’s outing against the Razorbacks, he can take care of each and show up when called upon. He and fellow defensive back Travon Mullen, a cornerback out of Clemson drafted in round two, should develop a chemistry early, as Mullen is also a speedster and heavy hitter.
As the Raiders play in arguably the NFL’s toughest division that is the AFC West, Abram will have his hands full, having to deal with quarterbacks such as Phillip Rivers of the Los Angeles Chargers and last year’s MVP Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs. Abram will also be seeing wideouts by the names of Keenan Allen, also a member of the Chargers and Emmanuel Sanders of the Denver Broncos. Like any rookie, Abram will struggle early, especially when matched up with the quarterbacks and wideouts mentioned above. However, Abram will only get better going up against the best as he did in the SEC.