With the Oakland Raiders having the fifth pick overall in the 2014 NFL draft, there are many avenues on where the team can go with their first pick. With the draft less than two weeks away, we can start to project what moves the Raiders may make come draft day.
There are many mock drafts out there making an analysis on what the Oakland Raiders will do with their first pick of the 2014 NFL Draft. As fans all know general manager Reggie McKenzie and head coach Dennis Allen are on thin ice.
Owner Marc Davis is ready to give them a fighting chance to prove their worth and value to bring back the Raiders to the commitment of excellence they once had in the league. Without the Silver and Black as villains, the NFL just has not felt the same.
But let us not fall off the subject at hand.
Please focus on the attributes of truly making the team stronger and built with future of Oakland. The Oakland Raiders had all sorts of needs going into this off-season but they did improve working through in Free Agency.
To start, the Raiders traded their 2014 sixth-rounder to the Texans to bring in Matt Schaub, a veteran quarterback with playoff experience and a team leader who can give guidance to the younger receivers and quarterbacks on the team.
The Raiders traded back-up quarterback Terrelle Pryor to the defending Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks for a seventh rounder in this year’s draft class.
McKenzie also decided it’s time to strengthen the defense by adding solid veterans through free agency as he signed veterans LaMarr Woodley, Antonio Richardson, Justin Tuck will add leadership and a new dimension to the defense.
Other signings on defense included two veteran corners from San Francisco Terrell Thomas and Carlos Rodgers. Oakland also brought back veterans in defensive tackle Pat Sims and safety Charles Woodson.
Let’s not forget the moves the Silver and Black made on the offensive side of the ball in building up their offensive line was a priority and they did that by signing veterans like offensive tackles Donald Penn, Austin Howard and guard Kevin Boothe along resigning Khalif Barnes. In addition, Oakland also give Schaub some much-needed firepower on offense in landing former Jacksonville Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew and ex-Green Bay Packer wideout, James Jones.
1st Round—Khahil Mack OLB Buffalo
Mack would be exciting to watch in Silver and Black, he may not be the most pressing need, but he is the top player available. Unless somehow wide receiver Sammy Watkins or defensive end Jadaveon Clowney slip, Mack will be their pick.
If none of the above are available by the fifth pick the Raiders need to shift to plan “B” they may trade the pick.
They can also go with a quarterback in Blake Bortles or Johnny Manziel. However, the best plan “B” for the Raiders for this year’s draft is to go with defensive tackle Aaron Donald out of Pittsburgh. According CBS Sports, he’s leading the country in sacks (1.6 per game) and tackles for loss (2.4), Donald might just be the most under-appreciated NFL prospect in college football.
2nd Round—Donte Moncrief, WR Ole Miss
Schaub has many decent targets to throw the ball to but no No.1 guy that he consistently go to. Moncrief is not Watkins nor Evans but he is a big strong receiver that can become the future number one target for the Raiders. He has a large frame and is fast enough to break away from corners. He will be an asset for the Raiders and a steal in the second round.
3rd Round- Tom Savage, QB Pittsburgh
Matt Schaub has a one-year deal with the team. If he doesn’t prove himself, the Raiders he cannot win. They need to find their quarterback of the future. Savage has the strength and leadership skills to become the future quarterback with the Raiders. Tom Savage may be a new name to NFL fans as the former Pitt quarterback has shot up draft boards in recent weeks. If the Raiders feel strong enough about him they can take him as early as the second round.
4th Round- Kelcy Quarles, DT, South Carolina
With the Raiders unable to resign Lamar Houston in free agency, that opened up the door for youth on the defensive front. Quarles fits right into the mix with Pat Sims and Stacy McGee. Last season, Quarles racked up the regular season with a team-high in sacks (13.5) and sacks (9.5) with the Gamecocks. As a teammate of projected top overall pick, Jadeveon Clowney, Quarles was given single coverage on the inside. Quarles is very quick and strong and will fit in the 4-3 defensive front of the Raiders.
7th Round Deron Furr, S, Fort Valley State
Oakland did a lot this offseason to fix their empty secondary in landing veterans Carlos Rodgers and Terrell Brown. Oakland also filled in the corner spots in re-signing Charles Woodson at safety. Woodson will be turn 38 in October and he’s not getting any younger and the simple need youth at that position. DeRon Furr, is a hard-hitting safety that could become a diamond in the rough late round/undrafted free agent prospect in the upcoming 2014 NFL Draft. Furr is the type of player the Raiders would love as he is a tackling machine, as he had 17 tackles this past season.
7th Round-Kevin Pamphile OT, Purdue
Many mock drafts have the Raiders snagging an offensive lineman within the first two rounds. But realistically, the Raiders signed a total of four offensive lineman through free agency and resigned another. Not saying they will not get an offensive lineman in the draft, but they just signed Donald Penn and Austin Howard at the tackle position. Penn signed a two-year deal and Howard signed a five-year deal. Pamphile was successful in Purdue and does have a bit of a learning curve but he has a lot of upside.
7th Round-Andre Hal CB Vanderbilt
This is the original Seattle Seahawks original pick in which the Raiders received for the trade with Pryor. There is many different directions the Raiders can go here, but taking another piece to the aging secondary will not hurt them. Hal needs to build up his physical traits to be a consistent NFL starter, but his tough, confident approach to the game should keep him on the Raiders roster and allow him to help in dime situations. This past season at Vanderbilt, Hal had three interceptions and one interception in the Compass Bowl against Houston.