Oakland Raiders NFL Draft needs, prospects, and picks by round

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Feb 25, 2014; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Lindenwood defensive back Pierre Desir runs the 40 yard dash during the 2014 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Progressing from the 2nd round into the 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th rounds means it’s time to fill depth, find the diamond in the rough, and help Special Teams.  The Raiders have draft picks in the 3rd round (#67), 4th round (#107), and three 7th round draft picks (#219, #235, and #247).  Again, I believe that there will be a push by the Raiders to add draft picks in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 6th rounds by trading down in either the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd round.  Even if McKenzie can only swing one or two additional choices somewhere in the 5th and 6th rounds, it will greatly improve the Raiders draft ability.

In the 3rd round, I think the Raiders will make their choice at QB, S, or CB here.  If the choice is going to be used on a QB, there are three possibilities that make sense from the standpoint that the Raiders are looking for the pocket passer with decent arm strength.  These candidates are:

1. Tom Savage, QB, 2. Zach Mettenberger, QB, or 3. A.J. McCarron, QB.

Any one of these three could be taken before the 3rd round, depending on other NFL team draft boards, but it would be a waste of a draft pick by the Raiders to take one in the 1st or 2nd rounds.  Out of the three, Mettenberger is the closest in size and weight to Schaub, and he would fit best in OC Greg Olson’s offensive scheme (Pocket QB).

I would prefer the Raiders to seek a S or CB in the 3rd round, and there will be plenty of talent available to choose from.  A player flying under the radar that I think would  benefit greatly from the tutelage of Charles Woodson, Carlos Rodgers, and Tarell Brown, is Pierre Desir, CB, out of Lindenwood University.  Desir is a very aggressive player with outstanding hand-eye coordination.  He locates the ball in the air well, and he is a hard hitter.  He will need to be refined, but the veteran players are in place to help develop him.  He spent his college career at small school’s, but I don’t believe this will stop him from developing into an NFL cornerback.

After the 3rd round, it’s pretty much a crap shoot.  The needs of the Raiders will be to back-fill LB, DL, OL, and bring in Special Teams players, possibly a returner.  There may be a player who becomes a star later on, but the likelihood of this occurring is slim.  Still, there are the Tom Brady’s, Seth Joyner’s, Shannon Sharpe’s, Marques Colston’s, Dwight Clark’s, Donald Driver’s, and Terrell Davis’ available in the later rounds of the draft.

Now is the time for the Raiders to make their move and position themselves to start a winning tradition for the years to come.  A better than good draft is going to have to happen for Reggie McKenzie, and it will begin with his first move.  Whether it is Khalil Mack, Mike Evans, Sammy Watkins, Aaron Donald, or a trade down, the move will need to automatically improve this Raiders team.  I have faith in McKenzie’s plan.  Go Raiders!