Raider Nation, with the season in the rear view mirror and most of our coaching questions answered, I believe that Winston Moss will be the DC once the Packers end their season, it is time to start letting some names resonate.
Last year we, as a Community, did a fantastic job of identifying our needs and the players who may fill them.
So, this year, let's start by identifying which players may be available, round by round and create our own Big Board.
This year's draft is going to be a challenge because with the first pick not coming until the 2nd Round, we know that a Top rated, QB, WR, RB, OT or CB will not be available at number 48.
My initial thought is that with our needs on the OL at Center, LG, RT and RG as well as in the defensive backfield if Nnamdi leaves let's take a look at who is projected to be 'Potentially" available when the Raiders pick.
Centers: There are two intriguing names here, Kris O'Dowd from USC and Stefen Wisniewski from Penn State.
Wisniewski is slated in most drafts to be taken by the New England Patriots at the top of the 2nd Round, but, if he falls past New England I am not sure that he makes it all the way down to #48, so he would cost the Raiders some valuable picks in a draft that they are already light at the top.
O'Dowd may be there in the third round, but would he be an upgrade over Satele? I'm not so sure. So, I say that if "Wiz" is there, take him, if he isn't, then let's pass on the Center position.
Guards: Rodney Hudson is an interesting prospect from Florida State.
Hudson has been an ALL ACC O-Lineman about whom Jimbo Fisher said, "He's one of the best I've ever coached." Interestingly enough, he may end up playing Center at the next level and deserves a good look because of his versatility.
Tackles: This is where I am extremely intrigued. DeMarcus Love and Jason Pinkston are both projected to be on the Board when the 48th pick roles around and they are both deserving of the pick.
I feel that IF DeMarcus Love is still around at #48, he would be a steal. He blocked for a 1,000 yard rusher and protected the blindside of a 3,000 yard passer in 2010. Named all SEC in 2010, I can only pray that we would be able to add someone of his ability to the O-Line in 2011. IF Robert Gallery leaves he could slide next to Veldheer or battle Mario henderson for the starting RT position.
Pinkston has been named First Team All Big East for the second year in a row and he has the ability to play tackle or Guard. I would definitely not be upset if Pinkston were the choice.
Cornerback: Davon House and Johnny Patrick are the names that CBS has listed in the range that we would be selected.
House projects as a man press corner on the outside (though he could play zone) because of his height and speed.
If this is true, we may have found our man, regardless of who else is available.
Johnny Patrick made big plays in big games and you all know how much Mr. Davis loves that stuff, but, Patrick projects as a zone corner.
So, with the draft still 3 months away and some intriguing names that are still floating our there like Dontay Moch, Marvin Austin and Quinton Carter, I am sure that my opinion will change, but, for now my Big Board would look like this:
If one of these players is there, our team will get better immediately. Stay tuned and chime in. Let's DO THIS!!!