The Offensive Line showed themselves to be quite capable and at times dominant in 2007.
Cornell Green's injury opened the door for the Raider Lineman that would win my most improved player award in 2007, Paul McQuistan.
McQuistan solidified the right side of the line.
To prognosticate that this team would be #5 in rushing in the NFL and would go 3 entire games in a row without yielding a sack would have gotten many of the "experts" laughed at given the performance of this team from 2003-2006.
But, that is exactly what they did.
There is still a bit of patchwork that must be done on Barry Sims and Newberry weekly, but McQuistan, Cooper Carlisle and Robert Gallery are a solid core of young linemen.
If by some stroke of GREAT LUCK the very talented LT out of Michigan is sitting there when we pick @ #3 or 4 the offensive line would be set enough for us to start looking at D-Line and offensive playmakers.
As fans, we don't know what we have in Mario Henderson yet. We have not been able to see him play in 18 weeks. He may be a stud himself and we wouldn't need Long. I just can't see any scenario where you make Cable pass on THIS kid.
Jake Long isn't the ONLY LT in this draft that has a career on Sundays. There are also:
Jeff Otah - Pitt
Sam Baker - USC
Ryan Clady - Boise St
These three players should all be gone by the time that the Raiders make their second selection at either 35th or 36th.
Once the underclassmen declare then we will get a real look at how far one or more of those LT's may fall. I'd saddle my horse up to any one of them. Especially IF that meant I could grab Dorsey or Ellis in the First and one of them in the second.
Matt Miller of New Era Scouting and also our sister site, http://www.mockingthedraft.com/, said that we should look at Malcolm Kelly out of Oaklahoma, IF he comes out early.
Here is a peak at him:
I'm going to go and dig up the free agent LT's and see if maybe we can land one there.
Cheers!!! AND GO RRRAAIIIIDDEERRSS!!!!!