Whitehead made six tackles (five solo) in Sunday's 20-19 loss to the Broncos. Whitehead led the Raiders in tackles for a second consecutive week, but the starting weak-side linebacker was held without a single tackle behind the line of scrimmage. He'll look to add to his count in Week 3 against the Dolphins as Oakland seeks a maiden victory.
Whitehead intends to sign a contract with Oakland, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports. Whitehead is coming off of a strong 2017 season in which he lead the Lions in tackles with 110, including a sack. He was one of the best linebackers in the NFL and the Raiders will be hoping the 27-year-old -- who can play both on the inside and outside -- keeps up the run of strong play. Per the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Whitehead's new contract is a three-year pact worth more than $6 million annually.
Whitehead accrued 110 tackles, one sack, two PBUs, one interception and four fumble recoveries across 16 games in 2017. Whitehead's role increased as the year went on with rookie first-rounder Jarrad Davis proving to be a liability in pass coverage. While Whitehead wasn't necessarily a huge upgrade in that department, the veteran certainly made his presence felt in the ground game considering he finished the year as Pro Football Focus' 12th-highest graded linebacker against the run and led the Lions in tackles. He's now logged triple-digit tackle numbers in each of the past two years, but he'll now be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the league year and is far from certain to return to Detroit in 2018.
Whitehead recorded eight tackles and one fumble recovery during Sunday's 24-21 victory over the Buccaneers. With rookie Jarrad Davis struggling in pass coverage, Whitehead has seen increased playing time in recent weeks and that's unlikely to change anytime soon, according to Kyle Meinke of MLive.com. He's now logged over 70 defensive snaps in two of the past three weeks while averaging 10.5 tackles in those outings. Whitehead won't help you much in other statistical categories, but his expanded role going forward should make him a reliable source for production in the tackle department.
Whitehead (pectoral) is listed as questionable for Sunday's game against Carolina. Whitehead logged 53 of 56 defensive snaps in a Week 4 win over the Vikings, finishing with five tackles and two fumble recoveries in a game Jarrad Davis (neck) missed. Whitehead and Davis were limited practice participants all week, leaving it unclear whether the Lions will have both (or neither) available for Sunday's matchup with the Panthers.
|5||10/07||@Los Angeles Chargers||23|
|9||11/02||@San Francisco 49ers||14|
|10||11/11||Los Angeles Chargers||23|
|13||12/02||Kansas City Chiefs||4|
|17||12/30||@Kansas City Chiefs||4|