The Raiders have a lot of needs. That means trading out of their current number three overall selection to collect more draft picks this year could be a good idea. It also means other teams have less of an idea which player they will target. Teams get jumpy and make offers in that instance.
It appears the top possible picks this year come at five different positions. Those are offensive tackle Luke Joekel, outside linebacker Jarvis Jones, defensive ends Damontre Moore and Jarvis Jones, defensive tackle Star Lotulelei and quarterback Geno Smith.
Smith is considered by most to be a late first round product but in a weak quarterback class and quite a few top ten teams needing a quarterback, he is very likely to be overdrafted.
For our scenarios, we must look at the possible picks who could be gone by the time the Raiders pick.
The top overall prospect is Luke Joekel. I have the Chiefs taking him in my mock draft so we will go with that for now. After that, it's the Jaguars and their desperate need for a pass rush. I have them taking Damontre Moore with that pick.
This would leave OLB Jarvis Jones, DT Star Lotulelei, and QB Geno Smith as the most in-demand players on the board. All of whom are the best at their respective positions and could have eager suitors looking to move up and snag them.
The most likely pick for the Raiders seems to be Star Lotulelei. At least that's how I see it. If the Raiders don't take him, the Eagles most certainly will. Same would go for Geno Smith who the Raiders have been "rumored" to be interested. And with the high likelihood one of those players will still be available for the Eagles at the fourth spot, they are unlikely to move up one spot. But knowing either the Raiders or the Eagles would take those two players could have another team looking to make a deal with the Raiders.
The Lions at five seems unlikely because they are probably content to take either Werner or CB Dee Milliner fall to them.
The Browns in the sixth spot would have a strong interest in Jarvis Jones or Bjorn Werner with one of them being available at third overall. The problem here is it would cost a high round two pick to move up those spots and the Browns have no round two selection. Next
This moves us to the Cardinals at the seventh overall pick. They too have a major need for a rush linebacker. Any of Jones, Werner, or Barkavius Mingo would be nice. They may even have interest in Geno Smith. But even so, there is a very good chance all of them could be gone by the time the Cardinals pick at seven. And if they have their heart set on one in particular, the Raiders would be their best chance to get their guy.
To move up to the third overall spot from the seventh spot, the Cardinals would have to send their round two pick (38) as well as their round four pick (100) to make the first round pick swap.
This would give the Raiders the seventh overall pick in round one and the sixth pick in the second round - just behind their original pick which was sent to Cincinnati in the Palmer deal. The extra fourth round pick would more than make up for their not having a pick in round five.
To find the next team who could have strong interest in the number three pick, we fall all the way to the Chargers and Dolphins at picks 11 and 12. Their interest would be wholly dependent on if Luke Joekel were still on the board when the Raiders pick as they both could be in need of a new franchise left tackle.
The problem with either of them moving up to the three spot is the price. To reach the value difference from those draft positions and the third overall, it would pretty much cost them their entire draft. The only way it could happen would be multiple picks in this draft as well as future picks. That's the kind of haul you usually only expect to see handed out for a franchise quarterback such as one Robert Griffin III.
Speaking of RGIII, the Rams traded out of their number two overall spot last year and received a king's ransom from the Redskins in return. They are also in need of a left tackle and with the extra first round pick they received from the Redskins, they have the ammo to go get it. In particular, they have the 16 and 21 pick in the first round they could dangle in front of the Raiders. Again, of course, that would require Joekel to be still on the board at pick three. If he isn't, they would either peddle their picks elsewhere or simply keep them both.
A lot will be decided before the draft. Free agency will play a big part in this as well. But from the looks of things, the Cardinals at seven are by far the most realistic trade partner the Raiders have at the three spot in this draft.