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Raiders DC: Goal for Bruce Irvin is double-digit sacks

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Bruce Irvin tied a career high with eight sacks in 2017. New Raiders defensive coordinator Paul Guenther is planning for the veteran edge rusher to get over the double-digit hump finally.

"I knew he was a really gifted rusher," Guenther said, via Paul Gutierrez of ESPN.com. "Just coming here, I thought his best assets for us was to go forward rather than go backwards. He's done a good job with what we're asking him to do in the base fronts.

"Obviously, we know what he can do as a pass-rusher. Hopefully, we can get him over a double-digit [sack] mark this year. That's the goal for him."

Irvin has been productive opposite Khalil Mack in two seasons in Oakland, earning 15 sacks, 115 tackles, four passes defended and 10 forced fumbles in an outside linebacker role. As a part-time pass rusher, Irvin earned 40 QB pressures last season, per Pro Football Focus, 14th among linebackers.

Irvin initially played an edge-rusher role as a rookie in Seattle, earning eight sacks, before moving to outside linebacker for the Seahawks. In Guenther's new defense in Oakland, Irvin will return to being primarily a pass rusher off the edge.

With Mack and Irvin as a potent one-two punch, the Raiders will look for a third-fiddle primarily from a group of rookies on the defensive line in Arden Key (edge), P.J. Hall (tackle) and Maurice Hurst (tackle) to push the pocket.

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