Mayock is arguably the most trusted expert on the draft, so when he offers his thoughts, people listen. And when he is available to answer questions, the media takes advantage of the opportunity.
Here is what he had to say about what he sees as the Raiders' biggest needs and what they might do in the April's draft:
"Well, I mean, we haven't even gotten to free agency yet, but I would say where we stand today it would be either the highest-rated defensive back on the board at that time or the highest-rated offensive lineman on the board at that time.
"We just spoke about those two tackles, [Jack] Conklin from Michigan State, [Taylor] Decker from Ohio State, whether or not they'd be there at 14, versus who would be the highest corner or free safety, given the retirement of Woodson. You start looking at that whole defensive back situation, I don't think there's a safety justified at 14. I think Ramsey and Hargreaves will both be gone, so then you start to talk about Mackensie Alexander, who he's an interesting conversation right now. Zero interceptions in two years. You don't see corners get drafted with zero interceptions, let alone in the first round, but he's a talented kid. Eli Apple from Ohio State, would he be worth a pick that high.
"So as the board unfolds, and before free agency, it wouldn't surprise me if you ended up with an offensive lineman."
Mayock's feeling about the Raiders pick at 14 overall are not dissimilar to that of Mel Kiper who had his conference call yesterday. Kiper had Conklin going to the Raiders in his first mock draft, and Apple in his second mock, with Conklin going to the Eagles with the pick just prior.
Offensive line and secondary predictions make sense for the Raiders. They could look to move on from Donald Penn at left tackle and should they not sign a replacement in free agency, the draft is the next logical place to find one. They also have a hole to fill at right guard.
The secondary was a liability last season, with David Amerson and perhaps TJ Carrie as the only viable starters on the team. A third corner is very much a need. Safety is deep in free agency, so you can figure the team will look to bring in a starter there and perhaps look for another after the first round of the draft.