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The Raiders made a huge gamble this offseason on their defensive line. The team released both Maurice Hurst and David Irving, both of who were expected to serve big roles this season. They also completely ignored the defensive tackle spot in the draft.

Now, the team is counting on Solomon Thomas, the No. 3 pick from the 2017 draft, to be their primary three-technique. While that seems like a stretch, he’s never been given the opportunity to only play defensive tackle and Thomas will be surrounded by talent on the edge.

In a recent article by Alex Ballentine of Bleacher Report, Thomas was named a potential breakout candidate for the Las Vegas Raiders. Here is what the site had to say about the former first-round pick:

“Thomas played in just two games last season while dealing with a torn ACL. He has also opened up about how the death of his sister has impacted his own mental state over the last two seasons.

The Stanford product showed promise in his rookie 2017 campaign. He had 41 tackles, three sacks and 10 TFLs. To date, it’s still his most productive year. With a change of scenery and a renewed mindset, Thomas could be a surprise breakout player who would elevate the defensive line.”

Thomas is only 25 years old and has dealt with some injuries during his NFL career. If he can stay healthy, he has a great opportunity to change the narrative about his career. Don’t be surprised if Thomas breakouts out in Las Vegas under new defensive coordinator Gus Bradley.

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