Round 1- Sammy Watkins WR Clemson
If available Watkins will give the Oakland Raiders a chance at a big time play maker that can help on both offense and in the return game. Watkins was a first team AP All-American, one of 4 players to ever achieve the accolade as a college freshman. While not blessed with elite height he still displays the ability to win contested balls and has the quickness off the line to get by the corner. After the catch is when Sammy shines, he ran a 4.43 40-yard dash at the combine and is both elusive and physical. Often he will take the defender head on and deliver a blow rather than getting stood up. Being almost unanimously considered a top 5 talent in this years draft speaks volumes to what Sammy Watkins is and what he will be in the NFL, the receiver position is especially deep this year but Watkins is a special player who stands above the rest of the prospects this year. He will make an immediate impact on the roster and possesses the work ethic to become even better.
Round 2- Lamarcus Joyner S/CB Florida State
I can see this pick as being controversial with the talent that will still be on the board at other key positions, but when I see Joyner play I believe I am looking at a real game changer. His production speaks to his big play ability, with 5.5 sacks 3 forced fumbles and 2 interceptions in 2013 alone. He was the best player on a ridiculously deep Florida State defense, not only did he come up with the big plays but his energy brought up the excitement on the field and his teammates feed off of that excitement. Lamarcus Joyner is an excellent tackler and displays the ability to tackle TEs and players almost twice his size, often wrapping up and taking the legs right out from under whomever he is tackling. Other times he will launch himself like a missile and clobber whoever is on the other end of the hit. Last year a similar play-making safety/corner came out of LSU, honey-badger was a nominee for defensive rookie of the year and showed his ability to come up with the same big plays he did at the college level. If there was a re-draft of the 2013 players Tyrann Mathieu would undoubtably be taken in the 1st round. Lamarcus Joyner is the same type of player and will be causing havoc on offenses for years to come.
Round 3- Dominique Easley DT Florida
Easley was a top 15 prospect and the top rated DT in the draft before suffering his second ACL injury in September 2013. This unfortunate event has dropped his draft stock greatly and most teams will think twice before drafting Easley onto their squad. Before I get to the player I would like to first address the injury. Easley has now torn both his left and right ACLs, but I don’t think this means he should be dismissed. First of all Easley choose the best orthopedic surgeon to perform both ACL operations. That doctor has an amazing success rate with ACL repairs. Having recovered rather quickly from his first ACL, when interviewed he didn’t show any frustration or concern about his second ACL, he knows how to get back into the game and the experience of recovering once will help his expectations of his second recovery. Now that that is out of the way, Dominique Easley is an absolute stud, he is considered the most athletic of all DTs in the draft and displays exceptional explosiveness off the line, ripping and shedding blocks and using great flexibility and leverage to penetrate from the interior. He has experience at both DT and DE and has even drawn comparisons too Greg Hardy. His versatility will be a huge bonus and Antonio Smith will be the perfect mentor for Easley.
Round 4- David Fales QB SJSU
There is no question that the Oakland Raiders need a franchise QB of the future, David Fales might be able to develop into that player. He shows great pocket awareness, accuracy and a quick release that is necessary for success at the next level. Having both McGloin and Fales on the roster to develop will ease some worries about what happens when Schaub is out. To be honest I was on the fence about drafting a QB at all, with Justin Ellis likely still available further solidifying the trenches makes a lot of sense to me with this pick. Although after watching the scouting report I embedded into this post I changed my mind..take a look for yourself, Reggie seemed to be pleased with his pro day and I am now convinced he could very well develop into a Franchise QB.
Round 7 pick 1- Andre Hal CB Vanderbilt
Andre Hal is projected by bleacher report as a 5th round pick but considering his lack of potential at ever being a starting boundary corner he could very well be dismissed until the end of the draft. Many mock draft site also have him going in the 7th round. He is considered a zone or slot corner and plays physically enough to make up for his small size, he is quick and registered a 4.4 40 at the combine. Given our lack of depth at corner he may be a welcome addition to the position group in Oakland. Hal is also a special team contributor and could further enhance our Punt coverage team.
Round 7 Pick 2- John Urschel OG Penn State
Reggie did great work in FA addressing the offensive line but a lack of youth across the board makes me believe an offensive lineman is a must at some point in the draft, even if it is a 7th round gamble. Urschel is an intelligent guard who could quickly learn an NFL playbook. He played in a pro-style offense and shows some great toughness on the football field.