BY LIAM QUIBELL
After an unexpectedly decent start to the year on the shoulders of Terrelle Pryor, there was some hope for a possible wild-card berth for the Raiders. But back-to-back tough losses to the Eagles and Giants have killed those hopes, and now it’s time for the Raiders to look to the draft.
There isn’t much going well for the Raiders right now besides good running by Rashad Jennings and decent quarterback play by Pryor. The Raider’s O-line is lacking, the receiving core is sub-par and the secondary has not been very successful over the last few weeks.
The Raiders first priority in this draft should be picking up a good possession WR that can bail Pryor out as well as some offensive linemen to buy the QB time in the pocket. Depending on where the Raiders finish, which will probably be in the bottom 10 of the league, Oakland will have many options to consider.
A guy I like for Oakland in the 10-15 range is Texas A&M WR Mike Evans. A big-bodied receiver with good hands is something the Raiders need to complement speedsters Denarius Moore and Rod Streater. I think that Clemson’s Sammy Watkins will get snatched up before the Raiders have the opportunity to take him, but either way, I like Evans to the Raiders.
A receiver isn’t the only route I think the Raiders may decide to take in the first round. The Oakland O-Line has been decimated in recent weeks and picking at their potential spot in the draft Baylor G Cyril Richardson or Tennessee OT Antonio Richardson are viable options. Richardson would be a great pickup to protect the left side of the O-line and block for Pryor on roll-outs.
The secondary doesn’t need the immediate attention as the other two positions, as the Raiders still have CB D.J Hayden who will hopefully get bigger and stronger this offseason. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Silver & Black spent a third round pick on a free safety such as Terrence Brooks from Florida State to backup the aging Charles Woodson.
GM Reggie McKenzie will have a number of options on draft day, and for Pryor’s sake, he cannot go wrong with Evans at WR or one of the big tackles available at 10-20.