Raiders missing out on Jayden Daniels should not dampen Day 1 hopes

The Las Vegas Raiders missed out on Jayden Daniels in the NFL Draft, but that should not dampen Day 1 hopes.
Raiders NFL Combine
Raiders NFL Combine / Michael Hickey/GettyImages

The 2024 NFL Draft is in full swing, and for the Las Vegas Raiders, the No. 2 overall pick took some of the air out of the room. With the second pick on Thursday night, the Washington Commanders selected Jayden Daniels, the favorite for many in Raider Nation to land in Las Vegas.

The quest for Daniels was a long one, as the Raiders would have had to move up over 10 picks on Day 1 to get him. The reigning Heisman Trophy winner is a do-everything quarterback who could have revolutionized the Raiders offense, but instead, he will begin his NFL career in the NFC East.

The links between Daniels and the Raiders were many, as he was recruited by Antonio Pierce at Arizona State. Despite the long road to move up to get him, Raider Nation still had him in their sights entering night one, but those dreams ended 30 minutes into the draft.

Now the Raiders have to pivot, and holding the No. 13 overall pick, you would have to think a quarterback could be out of the picture, at least in the first round.

Raiders losing Daniels should not dampen the excitement of Night One

Contrary to popular belief, there are bigger needs for the Raiders than the quarterback position going into the NFL Draft. There are significant holes along the offensive line, and in the secondary, so those should be the positions they target at No. 13 overall.

General manager Tom Telesco tried to move up to No. 2 to get Jayden Daniels earlier in the draft process, but obviously the Commanders were as high on him as the Raiders were. There is still opportunity to land a franchise-changing player in the first round on Thursday, and as quarterback fly off the board, including Drake Maye to New England at No. 3, it is time to turn the focus elsewhere.