With the upcoming draft looming, (and with the legal tampering free agency starting today), what players do the Raiders need in the draft. Plain and simple, we either need a quarterback or an explosive pass rusher. (We have so many holes to fill to be honest, that any pick outside of a fullback will suffice) If you cannot either get after the QB or be a QB, you will not win in this league plain in simple. The Raiders have neither. With Lamarr Houston, which is a player who has been loyal to Raider Nation since we drafted him out of Texas, not receiving any sort of contract and taking to twitter to complain about it, we need to find some pass rushers.
In my opinion, Blake Bortles will be the number one draft pick. The NFL Draft isn't about college static tics, its about potential. I like Blake, but in my opinion, there is other QBs that will better help a team. Blake has the frame to be a QB in this league. He also has the moxie, as shown by his comeback victories this past season. I just don't believe that he will be able to fulfill a number one draft slot. He comes into a great situation, which would mean they make the playoffs if he is at least serviceable. I mean I could throw a ball to Andre Johnson and he would catch it cause he's that good. But he could be a good QB for his career no doubt.
I personally think the Rams will trade out of their second round draft pick. Why waste an opportunity to lose a second, maybe two, and a third, when you know that a trade back could still have the player you want. I am talking about the falcons, which need a pass rusher after their dismal defensive pressure. Osi Umenyiora is not the player he once was. He needs at least some help. I think they trade this pick, because not only will the falcons get their guy in Clowney, but the Rams know they could get either stud Jake Matthews or Greg Robinson.
The 3rd pick gets tricky. What do the Jags do? They probably need more than the Raiders do at this point, minus the cap room we have. Some mock drafts have them going QB. I personally think that after the resigning of Chad Henne, they will focus more on building up the defense. That's why I think they take Khalil Mack. His pro-day put him up at the top. He's dedicated, strong, athletic and quiet. If he fell to the Raiders, I'd be upset we didn't snag him. He's that good.
With the 4th pick, up come the Browns. Even with the ineptitude of their front office, they have a team in place that is only a few pieces away from being relevant. We all know what they need. Its a QB. With receivers like Gordon and Cameron, they just need to be thrown too. This is where it comes down too. Do they take Manziel or Bridgewater?
This is where my Raider pick gets tricky. If the Browns select Manziel, the Raiders should absolutely draft Bridgewater hands down. No question. He could be the QB of the future. Especially with the WR class being so deep this year. We could get a Matthews or maybe even, fingers crossed, a Marquis Lee in the second round.
If Bridgewater is gone, Reggie needs to trade back and salvage picks. He needs too. At this point, its either stud WR Sammy Watkins, Mike Evans or Jake Matthews. None make that much sense. This is my Raider trade. the Lions will trade up for Sammy Watkins. They need another receiver and weapon. If Reggie is able to sweeten the pot to their 10th pick, plus their 2nd round, and next year's 2nd round, he should do it. Here's why. The Raiders need value. They need a player that will be the guy. They need a player that will bring this organization out of this muck. I believe that Anthony Barr will be there at 10 and provide a pass rusher alongside Sio. Plus with the extra picks, the raiders can fill out more extensive needs like a inside offensive line, minus Wiz, or an interior DLine.
This is my prediction. A lot can change until draft day. But I have hope in Reggie. I trust him to be able to spend that 66M for the right players. The Raiders will be relevant again soon enough.
Raider Nation Forever.