In the end, Bruce Irvin felt the only way he could reach his potential was to leave one of the greatest defenses in recent memory.
We'll let him explain.
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"I honestly felt like if I stayed in that (Seattle) system, I don't think I ever would be the player that I think I can be in this league, and that's being a pass rusher," Irvin told SiriusXM NFL Radio on Tuesday (via the Raiders' home site). "SAM outside linebacker is cool, but you can do your job the whole game at SAM linebacker and you'll have two tackles.
"I just want to be utilized more and get put in positions more to make plays. I really think (Raiders coach) Jack Del Rio and (defensive coordinator) Ken Norton, Jr., are going to do a great job of really allowing me to do that."
According to CSN Bay Area, Irvin was in pass coverage for close to 19 percent of his snaps over the past two seasons, but he still had success getting to the quarterback when given the opportunity. The first-round pick had 11.5 sacks over the past two seasons and 22 sacks overall across four seasons.
"I haven't even scratched what I know I can do, man," Irvin said. "Like I said, Seattle kind of limited me in that defense -- and I did the best that I could do -- but I haven't scratched my surface. I'm far from it. I still have a lot more great years, and a lot more things that I have to prove."
While we expect the Raiders to take advantage of Irvin's versatile skill set, it will be interesting to see what he can do if given the chance to get after a quarterback on a more frequent basis. Anchored by Irvin and Khalil Mack, the Raiders' defense will be a unit to watch this season.