Oakland Raiders: 2013 Draft Prediction
David Wilson – Apr 23, 2013
It is going to be a lot more difficult to predict what the Oakland Raiders will do this year than it was under Al Davis. But, this article is written by the ONLY writer to correctly predict Oakland’s first choice in last year’s draft (T/G - Tony Bergstrom).
All the more impressive (if I do say so myself…) as the Raiders weren’t on the clock until the 95th pick.
Looking at mock drafts, it is difficult to find one that doesn’t have the Raiders taking Florida defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd with the third overall pick.
Whilst I wouldn’t rule this out, this is a deep defensive tackle class, and Oakland could just as easily go with Star Lotulelei to address that position in round one. Floyd isn’t a lock to be the first tackle off the board in any event. His lack of overall production in college, and his short arms have raised concerns amongst some scouts.
Oakland also has gaping holes on the offensive line, at tight end, and no long term solutions at cornerback or free safety.
You can expect Reggie McKenzie to try and address all these positions at some point in the draft.
The question on ever Raider fans lips though, is where will the Raiders go with that all important number three pick in the first round?
My first thought is that if there is a suitable offer from another team available, then Reggie will trade down. With multiple holes to fill, that has to make sense. If the Raiders keep the pick, I say they will take Central Michigan tackle Eric Fisher.
Because Fisher is the best player available, and possibly the best player in this year’s draft class. I truly think that Reggie will go for value, and Fisher is a great prospect. Reggie and Dennis Allen have a plan I have no doubt, and drafting players on value will be a big part of that. Both got a good look at Fisher during the Senior Bowl week through practice, and he was widely praised as the best player on both teams.
Prior to the post season, Fisher was looked at as a player who may get into the top of round one. He had not had much exposure playing at Central Michigan, but the more coaches and scouts watched his tape and saw him play, the further he rose up draft boards. If you want value at number three, Fisher is it.
Drafting Fisher would give Oakland (along with Jared Veldheer ) two quality tackles, and with young Stefan Wisniewski at center, the makings of a top class offensive line. You don’t trade for a quarterback (Matt Flynn) not to give him the tools to do the job and keep him healthy.
If the Raiders trade out of the number three spot, the pick at that spot is still Fisher for whichever team trades up.
It is of course possible that both will be gone by pick three, leaving Oakland their choice of defensive linemen, or any other player for that matter.
But Fisher is my prediction.
Further down the draft, Oakland need to find a tight end. Cincinnati’s Travis Kelce is one of the few players the Raiders have met with. He has well documented character issues, but as well as being a receiving threat, he is a crushing run blocker. If he has convinced the Raiders in interview that he is taking football seriously, he would make great value in the third round.
If not in the first round, Oakland takes a defensive tackle at some point, and as stated, this group is deep in talent.
Whilst a cornerback would be great to get, Oakland has Tracy Porter and Mike Jenkins as serviceable starters for 2013. Drafting a corner could conceivably wait until 2014 if other value positional players are on the board.
It's going to be an interesting night this Thursday, and we have to trust in Reggie to get it done.
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