Divine Deablo stepping up at Raiders minicamp

Jun 7, 2023, 7:00 PM

Divine Deablo #5 of the Las Vegas Raiders pushes Alvin Kamara #41 of the New Orleans Saints out of ...

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA - OCTOBER 30: Divine Deablo #5 of the Las Vegas Raiders pushes Alvin Kamara #41 of the New Orleans Saints out of bounds in the first half at Caesars Superdome on October 30, 2022 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

(Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

At this week’s Raiders mandatory minicamp, a surprising name has stepped up to lead the defense.

Divine Deablo, a third-year linebacker, was spotted with a green dot on his helmet, signifying him as one of the leaders on the defense, communicating with others and essentially playing the quarterback for defenders. And it’s something coach Josh McDaniels says he’s worked hard to obtain.

“Once they have that on their shoulders now they’re responsible for more than just their job,” McDaniels said. “They have to communicate to everyone else. They have to be alert and aware of situational football, because they’re essentially the quarterback of the defense once you have that responsibility. So, Divine has grown literally every week since I’ve seen him and known him. He works really hard at the game of football. I think he’s embraced this year as a year that is a growth year for him, not only on the field in terms of what he does on the field, but also how he can impact others. And I think that’s something that you see from him every day.”

It’s understandable why McDaniels and the Raiders have so much trust in Deablo. With 25 games under his belt, his presence on the field has grown each year. Before cutting his second-year short with an injury, the linebacker recorded 45 tackles and one pass defended in eight games last season.

Now in his third year, Deablo says he’s feeling more confident.

“Last year I was the new kid on the block, I was nervous,” Deablo said. “It was my first year in the system. So now I’m more comfortable, I’ve been doing it for a while now, so yeah I’m ready.”

McDaniels agrees, saying his linebacker looks more confident heading into his third year.

“Divine [Deablo] knows a lot more, he understands the whole scope of the defense,” McDaniels said. “We’re trying to get him to learn it from that perspective so he can help others, like I said, much like the quarterback, and he’s embraced that.”

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