Jun 17, 2014; Alameda, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders linebacker Khalil Mack (52) at minicamp at Raiders Practice Facility. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Khalil Mack’s role is going to be flexible
Fifth overall draft pick Khalil Mack was drafted by the Raiders as the 2014 NFL Draft’s consensus best outside linebacker partly because of his elite pass rush, but his versatility was also a driving factor in general manager Reggie McKenzie to bring in the highly touted prospect out of Buffalo. So it hasn’t been much of a surprise that defensive coordinator Jason Tarver and head coach Dennis Allen have spent most of the OTA and Minicamp sessions putting their new toy out in different positions at linebacker.
In his final presser on Thursday, Allen mentioned that Mack’s versatility is something the staff is taking much into consideration when putting together ways on how they can use the rookie.
“You’re looking for guys that have versatility and guys that can really affect the game and he’s got that ability. Our job as coaches is to figure out what our guys can do well and put them in those positions where they can go out and execute and make plays” Allen said.
Mack’s ability to fill several different roles will be an interesting development to follow in the months to come as the potential of seeing Mack in the different positions and finding out if the rookie can thrive in all of them could be make the preseason fun for Raiders fans as well as the coaching staff. If Mack can show that he can play wherever Tarver needs him to play and succeed, it will be a telling sign that the rookie could be a future franchise player in Oakland.