Demarcus Van Dyke, welcome to the Oakland Raiders. And with this selection Al Davis got his speedster. Van Dyke ran a 4.28 40 at the NFL Combine and at 6' and 178 pounds that is going to turn some heads. Van Dyke is raw, but he has the athleticism that comes with being a Raiders' corner. There is no way around this one: Van Dyke is the prototypical Al Davis corner selection.
This is not my favorite pick. I would have preferred the Raiders passed on corners and waited to address any needs in free agency. They also reached for Van Dyke. With the news breaking before the pick that they traded for the 92nd they could have almost certainly drafted him then. There was an outside chance he would have been there when the Raiders make their selection in the fourth-round.
However, this guy's potential is through the roof, but he'll have to add some strength to hang with receivers on the shorter routes. Hopefully this will be this year's Jacoby Ford selection. He has decent ball skills and he certainly made strides as his career progressed.
Check out some highlights and read the scouting report after the jump. When the highlights start with a guy sprinting at the Combine chances are pretty good he is a Raider.
Van Dyke is a developmental sub-package defensive back prospect due to his track speed and height. Can do some good things in deep coverage and can recover but isn't sound in zone or underneath man coverage. Can make some plays on the ball but isn't going to rack up the interceptions. Is not physical when coming up to support the run. Isn't comfortable playing in a crowd but does break down well in space. Van Dyke was a dual-sport athlete at Miami (track) and has worked hard on the gridiron but only carries a mid-to-late round grade.
Strengths: Van Dyke is blessed with great speed and good height for a corner. Track athlete who can recover when beat and shows good burst to the football. Does a good job defending the deep ball with his length and straight-line speed. Is a good tackler in the open field. Hard-working and durable.
Weaknesses: Overall defensive back skill set needs polish. Is not overly fluid when asked to turn and run or stick with savvy route-runners. Will drift from his position in zone coverage. Not a real playmaker in terms of coming down with the INT. Not very productive when coming up in run support.