FanIQ Interactive Mock NFL Draft: Oakland Raiders

With The Seventh Pick In The FanIQ NFL Mock Draft, The Oakland Raiders Select...

4/15/09 in NFL   |   Raider_Dave   |   47 respect

With the NFL Draft coming on April 25, we're putting together a Mock Draft for the first round of the draft, featuring a combination of FanIQ Featured Writers, as well as some great NFL team bloggers from around the internet. Today, we'll feature picks from the Oakland Raiders, the Jacksonville Jaguars, and the Green Bay Packers. Every day until Friday, April 24, we will post more picks, with recaps of why each player was chosen, with some other analysis.

Here are the picks so far:

1. Detroit Lions - Aaron Curry, LB, Wake Forest
2. St Louis Rams - Eugene Monroe, OT, Virginia
3. Kansas City Chiefs - Jason Smith, OT, Baylor
4. Seattle Seahawks - Matthew Stafford, QB, Georgia
5. Cleveland Browns - Michael Crabtree, WR, Texas Tech
6. Cincinnati Bengals - Michael Oher, OT, Mississippi

http://49ersnews.com/wp-content/uploads/bj.jpgWith each pick in the first round costing more and more money in guaranteed contract dollars each year, trading down in the draft would be the most ideal situation.  However, trading down isn't as likely now as it has been even as recently as earlier this decade, because of just that reason, teams don't want to absorb the exorbitant amount of money associated with a higher draft choice.  With the most pressing of needs for the team that resides under a cloud of secrecy at 1220 Harbor Bay Parkway including Wide Receiver, Defensive Tackle, Offensive Tackle, and Middle Linebacker, the #7 overall choice should be an appropriate place to seize one of the many first round-projected players at each of those positions.  But with a draft featuring four top offensive lineman all projected as NFL franchise Left Tackles who can be taken before the Raiders choose, the other positions of need have no clear cut favorite projected that high.  With the first round of this Mock Draft proceeding as shown above, the pick that makes the most sense for the Oakland Raiders at #7 is B.J. Raji, the strong and stout Defensive Tackle coming out of Boston College.  

Al Davis, de facto General Manager and Owner of the team, hasn't selected a Defensive Lineman in the first round of the Draft since he took problem child and underachiever Darrell Russell with the second overall choice of the 1997 Draft.  So while the Raiders' draft history would suggest that the pick would lie in the typical Davis-style choice of a speedster wideout or sprinter defensive back, the Raiders have shown this offseason that they can make the moves typical of a functioning NFL franchise.  With Raji being paired with Ron Brace at Boston College, both players had very strong seasons in 2008.  Brace is projected as a mid to late first round pick himself, so it will be interesting to see if both players pan out at the pro level individually, or if they needed each other to shine at the college level.  That being said, Raji seems to be the player pro scouts like just a little bit more.  In the Draft, anything can happen and Raji could be gone by the time to Raiders actually choose, but in this scenario, he makes too much sense.

At the #7 spot, it is not out of the possibility for the team to trade down, as the Raiders have reportedly been taking calls on teams looking to move up if one of those tackle prospects drops down, or QB's Matt Stafford and Mark Sanchez are still on the board for those teams needing a franchise QB.  If that were to happen, the Raiders could take the big speedster WR Darrius Heyward-Bey, or the much needed true MLB Rey Maualuga.  Definitely needs who would be available a little later in the round, but Raji is the right guy here.

With Tommy Kelly coming off of major ACL surgery and an even bigger contract following the 2007-08 season, expectations are very high for him.  Backup DT Terdell Sands has been a major disappointment since he received his big contract a year earlier than Kelly, and in light of the fact that Sands reportedly had an altercation with Davis and team favorite P Shane Lechler on a team plane late last season, Sands can be viewed as expendable, with Raji being able to be plugged into the very weak Raiders' defensive line if drafted.  If that scenario plays out, the Raiders may have finally found a player who can solidify their sieve of a run defense, if they would be so lucky (or smart) to take Raji.
Notify me by email about comments that follow mine. Preview

4/17/09   |   Penueljf

With the 7 Pick In This Year's Draft The Oakland Raiders Select B.J Raji DT From Boston Collage.

4/16/09   |   Raider_Dave   |   47 respect

wrote:
No doubt nobody with 0 experience should be making that kind of money. What kind of Union do they have going anyway, a Reverse Union.

BIG changes should be in store for this next CBA, which could be a good or a bad thing.  As long as they come to one before the cap is gone, I'm basically ok with what comes out of it.

4/16/09   |   Raider_Dave   |   47 respect

MarkTheShark wrote:
I totally disagree with the assessment of Orakpo = Gholston...Orakpo is MUCH stronger than Gholston and played against better tackles in the Big 12...Orakpo will have as mush impact, eventually, as Mario Williams

Only time will tell right?  There's no basis for an NFL assessment at this point.

4/16/09   |   xJakex

Its Simple its Either Maclin or Crabtree both excellent player Oakland Needs good Wide Recievers and thats what they will go after in the 2008 NFL Draft

4/16/09   |   MarkTheShark   |   590 respect

Raider_Dave wrote:
Texas players don't really pan out in the NFL, especially lately.  Orakpo = Gholston, and many people have Cleveland picking him, which doesn't make sense because Mangini would've learned from last year's draft.  Orakpo is the biggest boom or bust type pick in this year's draft, and although Davis usually goes for those, they have been playing this offseason very wisely.

I totally disagree with the assessment of Orakpo = Gholston...Orakpo is MUCH stronger than Gholston and played against better tackles in the Big 12...Orakpo will have as mush impact, eventually, as Mario Williams

4/15/09   |   radiowave000   |   145 respect

With the 7th pick in the Draft the Oakland Raiders select.." a player who fits the Al Davis system"
too bad that system went out of style in 1985.

4/15/09   |   JKB37   |   2409 respect

Raider_Dave wrote:
True, which is why (although rare) I think they will trade down unless Crabtree is available for them.  But do they think Crabtree is $10-20 million better than Heyward-Bey (about the difference of 8-10 picks)?  Man the NFL needs a rookie salary structure...

Truer words have never been spoken.

4/15/09   |   Raider_Dave   |   47 respect

wrote:
Good choice here, but the Raiders need so much help any pick would be good.

True, which is why (although rare) I think they will trade down unless Crabtree is available for them.  But do they think Crabtree is $10-20 million better than Heyward-Bey (about the difference of 8-10 picks)?  Man the NFL needs a rookie salary structure...

4/15/09   |   JKB37   |   2409 respect

Keeter wrote:
I'd think that if Maclin (WR) is still on the board, General Al Davis would be VERY tempted to take him............he loves speed !!!

(and I think that Maclin is faster than Heyward-Bey, who I saw 1 game of his, and he was good.....but didn't really stand out to me.......)

I didn't see much of Maclin, but I saw all of Heyward Bey's games.  If he had any semblence of a QB he would have been Randy Moss in a college uniform...  Maybe...  He routinely had his man beat downfield.  Who knows if he could have made plays or not?  He just wasn't thrown to that much.  As a Terp fan..  Quite frustrating..

4/15/09   |   Raider_Dave   |   47 respect

boose51 wrote:
 I am thinking defense here as well for the raiders...I will go with Orakpo at number 7

Texas players don't really pan out in the NFL, especially lately.  Orakpo = Gholston, and many people have Cleveland picking him, which doesn't make sense because Mangini would've learned from last year's draft.  Orakpo is the biggest boom or bust type pick in this year's draft, and although Davis usually goes for those, they have been playing this offseason very wisely.

4/15/09   |   Raider_Dave   |   47 respect

Yeah, big IF there for both teams.  I think if Crabtree is there, the Raiders grab him, but Raji just makes too much sense.  The only knock is that he played with a great teammate in Brace, and that his height is not ideal, but I don't really see either of those as valid reasons.  If the Niners were able to grab him, that would be excellent for their D, especially with Willis to clean up what gets past him.  But both teams have many needs, so anything is possible.

4/15/09   |   Raider_Dave   |   47 respect

derms33 wrote:
Rey M.  USC...and no I am not attempting to spell his last name

He is my dream pick for them.  They desperately need true playmaking MLB and Maualuga would be perfect, and they could even move back a few spots to get him too.  If they were smart enough to try and get him, they would have one of the best LB tandems in the NFL, all playing at their natural positions. 

4/15/09   |   100%InjuryRate   |   1283 respect

Raider_Dave wrote:
They already have a Maclin type on the team, Johnnie Lee Higgins.  It's either Crabtree at #7 or a trade down if they take a WR in the 1st.
(Edited by 100%InjuryRate)

Raji is one of those D-tackles, or more appropriately, nose tackles, that comes along once in a blue moon. Very few guys are this big, this agile, and this tough to block. They'd be nuts not to take him if he's still available here. I'd love to see Raji fall to my Niners though.

4/15/09   |   derms33   |   17653 respect

Rey M.  USC...and no I am not attempting to spell his last name

4/15/09   |   boose51   |   1 respect

 I am thinking defense here as well for the raiders...I will go with Orakpo at number 7

4/15/09   |   Raider_Dave   |   47 respect

Keeter wrote:
I'd think that if Maclin (WR) is still on the board, General Al Davis would be VERY tempted to take him............he loves speed !!!

(and I think that Maclin is faster than Heyward-Bey, who I saw 1 game of his, and he was good.....but didn't really stand out to me.......)

They already have a Maclin type on the team, Johnnie Lee Higgins.  It's either Crabtree at #7 or a trade down if they take a WR in the 1st.

4/15/09   |   Keeter   |   92 respect

I'd think that if Maclin (WR) is still on the board, General Al Davis would be VERY tempted to take him............he loves speed !!!

(and I think that Maclin is faster than Heyward-Bey, who I saw 1 game of his, and he was good.....but didn't really stand out to me.......)

4/15/09   |   drn0iswatr   |   731 respect

 great article - I think when a team can draft a guy who is both the most talented player available AND meets a need then they have drafted well. It sounds like if Oakland is able to get Raji they would be doing a good thing. 

4/15/09   |   JKB37   |   2409 respect

Great Job Dave!  The Raiders might be better suited with you as their Draft Day War Room Guru.  That said..  With the 7th pick in the draft, the Oakland Raiders select:  Darius Heyward Bey... 

4/15/09   |   Heyhey1970   |   194 respect

Good stuff, Dave.  It sounds intriguing for them to move down to take Heyward-Bey. 

4/15/09   |   DigitalSquire   |   1 respect

 Agreed ... Either Raji or Orakpo.  But saying that ... im guessing they pick Maclin from Missouri. Just cause Al Davis is senile.