Mel Kiper first mock: Raiders pass on Teddy Bridgewater, draft Sammy Watkins

Mike Ehrmann

One of the more strange mock drafts came out today. It was the ‘vaunted' Mel Kiper's first mock draft of the year and he went against the trend of most every other draft guru out there in some of his picks.

Some of you might be wondering how the Raiders could possibly pass on Teddy Bridgewater. Not only because everyone seems convinced he will go at least in the top four picks, if not the number one overall, but because the Raiders' need at quarterback would seem to make Bridgewater a shoo in.

Beats me. All I know is he thinks the Raiders will take wide receiver Sammy Watkins while Teddy Bridgewater drops through all the QB needy teams in the top of the draft, down to the Vikings at pick eight.

Here is what Kiper said about the Raiders making the pick at number five overall:

Analysis: I count Oakland among the teams that could use a talent upgrade at QB, but the Raiders need to take really good football players who can help the team right away -- and I believe their front office knows it. Watkins qualifies as an experienced and explosive combination of a pass-catcher and dynamic runner after the catch. And while he lacks elite size for the position, Watkins brings an elite level of explosiveness before and after the catch and is a significant threat and can beat defenses over the top. Unless you count a healthyDarren McFadden (who is an unrestricted free agent this offseason), Oakland has lacked a player who is a constant threat to create big plays. Watkins can fill that void.

As it stands, this is how Kiper has the top ten playing out:

1. Texans - Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M

2. Rams - Jake Mathews, OT, Texas A&M

3. Jaguars - JaDaveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina

4. Browns - Blake Bortles, QB, Central Florida

5. Raiders - Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson

6. Falcons - Anthony Barr, LB, UCLA

7. Buccaneerrs - Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo

8. Vikings - Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville

9. Bills - Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn

10. Lions - Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma St

It is still pretty early in the process and Kiper could be setting up to keep everyone interested with a lot of movement on his board. Or he could be onto some things others may not be thinking about. For all we know, Bridgewater could have a Geno Smith like fall (Smith was once a top rated pick and fell into the second round).

It's fun to speculate.

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