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Raiders take Memphis offensive lineman Dylan Parham at No. 90

Las Vegas addresses big need area

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: FEB 02 Reese’s Senior Bowl Practice
Dylan Parham (56)
Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Dylan Parham just made Las Vegas Raiders history.

The offensive lineman from Memphis is the first draft choice of the Josh McDaniels-Dave Ziegler era at pick No. 90 in the third round. It was a long wait for Las Vegas (and the fans) after it sent its first and second-round picks to the Green Bay Packers last month for superstar wide receiver Davante Adams.

While on the clock on No. 86, they traded down to No. 90 with the Tennessee Titans. They picked up No. 169 in the fifth and now how a total of six picks. They have No. 127, 164, 165, 169 and 227 picks Saturday. Thus, a fourth, three fifths and seventh-round pick.

The Raiders hope Parham was worth the wait to kick off their 2022 draft.

It’s an interesting choice and and decent value at an area of need. Ziegler hinted last week that there might be a lot of offensive line options in the third round and they found a versatile player who can play all five positions. But he projects either as a guard or a center. He told reporters Friday night he will play wherever the Raiders, who met with him at the NFL combine, want to play him.

That means 2021 first-round pick Alex Leatherwood may get a chance to play at right tackle again. He was moved to right guard during his rookie season. McDaniels said this offseason the team was not opposed to putting Leatherwood, who struggled as a rookie, back at right tackle.

Parham, 6-foot-3, 311 pounds, is athletic and quick and plays with a mean streak. Many scouts think he can develop into a solid starter.

The Raiders had several intriguing options available to them at No. 90, including cornerbacks Coby Bryant and Tariq Woolen and tackles Daniel Faalelle and Sean Rhyan. But Parham was the call.

The Raiders now have five picks on Saturday in the four final rounds. The drafts start at 9 a.m. PT. I could see the Raiders using a couple of their fifth-round picks to move up. Look for cornerback, linebacker and perhaps more offensive linemen to be among the focal points Saturday.