In continuing with our preview of the upcoming draft we’re going to take a look at another late round, outside linebacker prospect. Today we’re putting Oregon linebacker Josh Kaddu under the microscope.
Reggie McKenzie has made it known that outside linebacker is an area of top priority. In the free agency market the Raiders are so cash strapped that they’ll have to scrape the bottom of the barrel to find a cost effective solution. You’ll likely see the Raiders use one of the higher picks (a relative term when your top pick is 95th overall) on an outside linebacker. Kaddu will most likely be a 3rd round pick at best but could drop further.
Kaddu is an intriguing prospect for a number of reasons. In a completely non-football related aspect he’s a NorCal native born in Richmond and attended high school in Cowtown (Vacaville), so he’s on the Raiders’ radar by proximity alone. Kaddu’s spent most of his days at Oregon playing the SAM linebacker position which is exactly where the Raiders are looking to find a replacement for Kamerion Wimbley. Here is a quick glance at Kaddu.
Josh Kaddu, OLB, Oregon
Strengths: A two-year starter for the Ducks at the SAM position with amazing athletic talent. Was clocked at 4.58 in 40-yard dash at the combine and recorded a 34” vertical. Should be a good fit playing outside in a 4-3 NFL scheme. Can rush the passer and has shown real ability in pass coverage as well. Consistently improved each year at Oregon which could mean he has yet to reach his ceiling. Will have to work to become an every down linebacker but will be an instant contributor on special teams.
Weaknesses: Despite having all the physical tools his stats don’t impress, was 6th on Oregon in tackles. Not known for his ability to recognize. Relies too heavily on athletic ability instead of football instincts to make plays. Looks like a project that will require patience and proper coaching in order to make the most of his talents. Combine bench press was nothing to write home about, 20 reps of 225.