2021 NFL Draft: Could the Las Vegas Raiders draft an interior OL?
By Brad Weiss
The Las Vegas Raiders need help at right tackle with the trade of Trent Brown, but could they be targeting an interior OL with pick No. 17 overall?
It has been a crazy offseason for the Las Vegas Raiders in terms of their offensive line, as they have traded away three of their five starters from Week 1 of the 2020 NFL season. Rodney Hudson, Gabe Jackson, and Trent Brown were all traded away for draft picks, leaving the team with question marks along the offensive line.
For the past few years, the offensive line has been a strength for the team, boasting veteran leadership. However, with the trades this offseason, the Raiders are hitting the reset button in front of Derek Carr, and have already made some solid moves to shore up the issues.
Nick Martin was added to hopefully replace Hudson, and Denzelle Good and Richie Incognito were both brought back on new deals. Still, issues remain, and in the 2021 NFL Draft, the team should be targeting an offensive lineman with pick No. 17 overall.
The question is, what area of the offensive line will they address.
Raiders tab an interior OL in latest mock draft
In a ton of recent mock drafts, the Raiders have been targeting an offensive tackle, specifically Teven Jenkins from Oklahoma State. Sure, it would be a best-case scenario if Rashawn Slater or Christian Darrisaw fell to the Raiders, but Jenkins is an outstanding talent as well and could come in and start right away at the right tackle.
However, we have seen a trend in recent weeks of the Raiders looking at interior offensive linemen, including Alijah Vera-Tucker from USC. This is a kid who could definitely start right away with the Raiders, possibly moving Denzelle Good out to right tackle, so it just will be how Mike Mayock feels about that move.
Of course, Las Vegas did see improvement from Brandon Parker last season, but him going into the season as the starting right tackle is a tough proposition to think about. Is he good enough to start at the NFL level, or is he just a depth piece? Regardless, Las Vegas needs more talent along the offensive line, and No. 17 is trending in that direction.