Washington State vs. Colorado State
Well, this game wasn't the most entertaining of bowl games. There was a lot of scoring, but it wasn't because it was two teams full of talent squaring off. Many of the guys here underperformed and had mistake riddled games. There was one player worthy of consideration though, so let's get into it.
Expected: This is what round the player is expected to be drafted.
Fit with the Raiders: Great Fit- We should actively look to pick up this player; Good Fit- Worth picking if no great fit players are available; Average Fit- If the conditions are right, worth giving a shot. Value has to be right because there is a decent possibility that they won't work out; Poor Fit- Only draft if this players is hands down the BPA and there's no other options available since there is a high probability they won't make the roster; Terrible Fit: Drafting this player would be a mistake as there's next to no chance they make the roster and would be a wasted pick.
Successful Draft Eligible Players
This section is for players going into the draft who had a bowl game worthy of mentioning. Expected UDFA's who make a great impression will be included. (For high profile players, footage from other games will also be taken into consideration).
1. Deone Bucannon- SS Washington State
He was really the sole big talent in this game. He hits hard and is a sure tackler. He only had 5 tackles this game, but they were all good hits. More importantly, he had a beautiful interception where he baited the QB into throwing it then made it look like the pass was intended for him to begin with. He's not the kind of safety who is going to come up and make hits behind the line, but he's a sure tackler and can cover. He's the kind of guy you can trust in the secondary. It should be mentioned he played 4 top 25 teams this season (Auburn #2, Stanford #5, Oregon #10, and Arizona State #16). On the season he had 114 tackles with 78 of them solo. He had 6 interceptions this year, including one against #5 Stanford and #16 Arizona State. He had 3 forced fumbles including one against #2 Auburn and #10 Oregon. In all the ranked games he had at least 9 tackles. In short, he's the kind of guy who can show up against talented teams.
Expected: 2nd round
Fit for the Raiders: Average/poor fit. He's a damn good player and has a spot in the NFL. The problem is that he's a 2nd round pick, ranked number one overall in his position. If anything he's going to go higher than expected, not lower. We locked Branch in long term, we've got Woodson starting at FS, and I just don't see Bucannon fitting in here despite his talent. I wouldn't argue the pick if he's the BPA and we have no other options, but I don't think this is a pick for us. I wouldn't be surprised if he went in the first round.
Players Falling Short
This section is for players who are expected to be drafted who did not live up to their expectations during the bowl game. This is based on draft expectations. (Expected UDFA won't be included).
1. Shaquil Barrett- OLB Colorado State
He's not a bad tackler. He had 6 total tackles. His big attribute is his rushing ability. On the season he had 20.5 tackles for a loss with 12 of them sacks. He had 6 QB hurries and 4 forced fumbles. They didn't play a ton of competition though and in this game he looked slow. He simply can't cover; he's solely a pass rusher. The problem is I don't think he has the physical talent to be a good rusher in the NFL.
Expected: 7th round
Fit for the Raiders: Terrible fit. I know he's a 7th round pick but I wouldn't waste our time. He's a specialist in terms of what he can do, but he won't be able to do it at the NFL level.
2. Damante Horton- CB Washington State
He's not a bad tackler but his coverage skills aren't amazing, and he wasn't playing against elite talent. He did force a fumble this game, but aside from that he looked very average. He's short at 5'10" and very light at 178. Unlikely Bucannon, all his positive stat games come from the non-ranked teams. Against the 4 ranked teams they played, he recorded no interceptions, no passes deflected, no tackles for a loss, no forced fumbles. He seemed to record more tackles against ranked teams which would make me think that he was getting beat and then making the tackle after the completion, similar to what we see from Mike Jenkins this year. That's certainly what happened in this bowl game. Most of his 6 tackles came on plays where he got beat and then made the tackle after.
Expected: 7th round
Fit for the Raiders: Terrible fit. There's a good deal of negative qualities here that make me think he won't succeed in the NFL. I don't think we should even bother bringing him in as an UDFA.
3. Weston Richburg- C Colorado State
Wow, did this guy play bad. He was giving up pressure a lot. He looked bad trying to run block, just not being able to keep guys in front of him. His footwork looked very slow. If a guy made a move on him, be it a spin move or whatever, it generally worked. He gave up a run-stuff because he couldn't keep his guy in front of him. He got pushed back on a running play when he was supposed to be pushing forward. It looked very bad.
Expected: 2nd round
Fit for the Raiders: Terrible fit. I don't know how this guy is a 2nd round pick. He got ranked 2nd overall at his position at center. If that's the case, I'm glad we have Wisniewski at center and aren't in desperate need. If this guy is truly the second best center in the draft, well then I guess we won't be taking a center this draft.
4. Crockett Gillmore- TE Colorado State
He looked very average. His poor blocking ability was about the only thing I found noteworthy of him this game. He had 4 receptions for 44 yards, but they weren't memorable plays, nothing worth noting. He's a big guy, but he's hasn't had big production. He had to make an impression in the bowl game to set himself apart and he just didn't do that. When you come from a team like Colorado State you HAVE to stand out to make a statement that you can produce at the NFL level. He didn't.
Expected: 6th round
Fit for the Raiders: Terrible fit. We have a ton of young guys at TE that I feel are better than this guy. Enough said.
This section is for players who aren't in the 2014 draft, but showed up in the bowl game to make an impact. As a result, they may warrant being looked at down the line to see if they really do have the skills necessary.
None. Two average schools, what do you expect? Not every game can be full of talented gems.