The Las Vegas Raiders hold the No. 17 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, this after a season that saw them finish 8-8 and land once again outside of the playoffs. For general manager Mike Mayock and head coach Jon Gruden, this is a crucial draft for the tandem, which will be their third together for the Silver and Black.
A former draft analyst, Mayock has done a great job finding talent after the first round, utilizing events like pro days and the NFL Scouting Combine to find diamonds in the rough. The Raiders organization also coached at the Senior Bowl a few years back, giving them an up-close and personal look at some of the better prospects the draft had to offer.
On Wednesday, the complete list of prospects invited to the 2021 Scouting Combine was announced, and you can see the entire list here.
Raiders enter crucial 2021 NFL Draft
Over the last two NFL Drafts, the Raiders franchise has held five first-round picks, and outside of Josh Jacobs, the jury is still out on that group of players. Jacobs has become one of the best in the NFL at his position, but players like Clelin Ferrell, Johnathan Abram, Damon Arnette, and Henry Ruggs III are all still finding their way.
It has been the picks after the first round that have really succeeded so far, outside of Jacobs, including Hunter Renfrow, Maxx Crosby, and Trayvon Mullen. Even Foster Moreau has looked good when he is actually getting some snaps, so while Mayock has done a good job in that respect, hitting a home run with his only first-round selection in 2021 is crucial.
The Raiders are a few pieces away from being a playoff team, and this is a big offseason for the organization, who will have to find some cap space to bring in more talent on defense. They have already started to make moves by releasing Tyrell Williams, and reportedly Gabe Jackson, but it will be the draft that will set them up for the long-term success that has evaded the Silver and Black this century.