Raiders 2023 NFL Draft class trending upward as the season progresses

The Las Vegas Raiders selected nine players in the 2023 NFL Draft, and the class is finally trending upward as the season progresses.
New York Giants v Las Vegas Raiders
New York Giants v Las Vegas Raiders / Ian Maule/GettyImages
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Raiders may have found their long-term QB on Day 3

In the fourth round, the Raiders selected Purdue quarterback Aidan O'Connell, a guy who was expected to come in and be the No. 3 signal-caller behind veterans Jimmy Garoppolo and Brian Hoyer. A former walk-on for the Boilermakers, O'Connell worked his way up to being the starter, and ended up being a record-breaking quarterback for Purdue when all was said and done.

In his rookie season, O'Connell was thrust into action when Garoppolo went down with an injury early in the season, starting against the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 4. When Garoppolo was forced to miss another game later on, the Raiders decided against O'Connell, going with Brian Hoyer, which ended up being a big mistake by former head coach Josh McDaniels.

With McDaniels gone, and Garoppolo healthy, interim head coach made the decision to go with O'Connell full-time, and he was outstanding against the New York Giants in Week 9. O'Connell played so well that some believe he could be the long-term answer at the position, which would make him a terrific Day 3 find by former general manager Dave Ziegler.

We will see how the rest of the 2023 NFL season plays out for O'Connell, as he has some tough matchups ahead, but if he continues to progress at the position, the Raiders may have found their franchise guy at pick No. 135 overall.