Two days are now in the books for the Raiders and it has been a wild three rounds. There are five new players in the building and five trades that brought them in.
Every single player they got came with a trade. Day two began with some rumors the Raiders could look to move up because the player they wanted was still on the board. Then they traded down from 41 to 57 where they selected Sam Houston State DT PJ Hall. As soon as the second round was done, the Raiders traded up from 75 to 65 to grab North Carolina A&T OT Brandon Parker. Their next pick was 89 and they traded up two spots to 87 to take LSU DE Arden Key.
These moves were after a day one in which they traded down from 10 to 15 before selecting Kolton Miller, traded one the third round pick they got from the Cardinals to get Steelers receiver Martavis Bryant, which they are treating like a draft pick even though he has just one year left on his 2014 rookie deal.
As for the players they got today, PJ Hall is an interior pass rusher, which was a position at which Jon Gruden had admitted the team had a great need. Hall will play the 3-tech DT spot.
Parker played only left tackle at North Carolina A&T -- another small school, but Gruden called upon some Raiders legends in defense of those decisions.
“I realize that we’re gonna have our skeptics,” said Gruden. “We took two guys that were from small colleges but so was Willie Brown and Art Shell and a lot of Howie Longs and other great players that have come through here. We don’t discriminate against people just because they didn’t play at Notre Dame or USC or in the Pac-12 or SEC.”
The common thread with these picks seems to be measurables. Kolton Miller and Brandon Parker are both big tackles with long arms, Hall is short, but otherwise had exceptional pro day workout numbers, and Arden Key has been described as having potential first round talent, but with serious character concerns. For that matter, so does Martavis Bryant.
These picks were so old school Raider-like, Gruden’s mom noted it.
“My mom called, she said that maybe Mr Davis was calling the picks down from heaven,” Gruden said with a smile. “It’s a philosophy that I have, it’s a philosophy that I learned here. Bigger guys can be a good thing. Faster can be better. We feel like we added one of the fastest receivers in all of football today in Martavis Bryant. Two really outstanding young massive tackles that can pull, that can pass protect, that can continue to get better, that’ll fight, that’ll take us to another level of execution. And inside rusher and an edge rusher. That’s all we did today was add five young players that we think can be dynamic. That’s just a prediction right now, but we feel good about it.”
Here is the updated draft order after all the madness:
Round 1, pick 15 (from ARI) — Kolton Miller, OT, UCLA
Round 2, pick 57 (from TEN) — PJ Hall, DT, Sam Houston State
Round 3, pick 65 (from BAL) — Brandon Parker, OT, North Carolina A&T
Round 3, Pick 87 (from LAR) — Arden Key, DE, LSU
Round 4, pick 110
Round 5, pick 159 (from NE)
Round 5, pick 173 (from DAL)
Round 6, pick 185
Round 6, pick 216 (Comp)
Round 7, pick 228
And here are the best players available for day three:
17. Maurice Hurst, DL, Michigan
47. Tim Settle, DL, Virginia Tech
56. Tyrell Crosby, OT, Oregon
63. Jaylen Samuels, TE/WR/RB/FB, North Carolina State
73. Equanimeous St. Brown, WR, Notre Dame
74. Jamarco Jones, OT, Ohio State
75. Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, Edge, Oklahoma
78. Da’Shawn Hand, DL, Alabama
79. Duke Ejiofor, Edge, Wake Forest
82. DeShon Elliott, S, Texas