Since the 2017 NFL Draft is tonight, the staff at Cover32Raiders decided to each select three players the Raiders need. In addition, the selections fall into the realistic range. In other words, no fantasy drafts. Why? To begin with, no one wants to read about fairy-tale foolishness. RaiderNation demands and deserves keen insight. With that said, each staff member, picks three players and cites reasons why.
2017 NFL Draft: Taking a look at offensive guard prospect, Dan Feeney
Around the NFL: Steelers’ Martavis Bryant reinstated after year-long ban
NFL Free Agency: The Green Bay Packers sign offensive guard, Jahri Evans
Extended Draft Coverage: Taking a look at running back prospect, Brain Hill
Pete Camarillo (@Petecertified)
Realistically, the Oakland Raiders need to address their defensive tackle, secondary and running back positions in this draft. D’Onta Foreman is the ideal downhill back for us in the second and third rounds. He has impressive Pro Day tests and he rushed for 2,000 yards last season. He compliments Richard and Washington well. On the defensive side of the ball, Zach Cunningham is one of the most complete players in the draft. There are some questions about his scheme fit, but he will be the best player available at No. 24 so Oakland will tailor their scheme for him. Otherwise, a versatile defensive back like Desmond King makes sense for us in the second or third rounds too. King fills our need at the nickel corner spot and he could develop into a starting safety that replaces Reggie Nelson.
Jordan Briskey (@jordan_briskey)
The 1st realistic pick is Malik McDowell. He solves a huge problem for us now that Dan Williams is gone and could be dominant if he produces to his potential, with that being said he’s a safe pick being lower in the first round for the first time in a number of years.
Sidney Jones is number 2 on the list, where having an injury like he did at his pro day could work to our benefit. I know it’s horrible to say but he’s very talented and teams that need impact players day 1 will look other places since he might end up on the PUP list to start the year.
Number 3 is a late round pick in Joe Williams, he has so much potential that if didn’t have any hiccups in college off the field he would be a day two pick for sure. He is a guy that in round 6-7, or if we were lucky enough to sign as an UDFA he would be one of the guys Reggie said we need to hit on in order to keep competitive with the core players big contracts on the horizon.
Gavin Brooke (@RaiderTake89)
With the Raiders in dire need of help at LB, my first pick is Reuben Foster. He’s an obvious choice in terms of talent and position.
Second player the Raiders should draft is Chidobe Awuzie CB. He has great attributes for a CB, including great height and reach and also good speed off the mark in coverage.
Lastly, my final pick is D’ Onta Foreman. With a need to pick up a long term solution at RB, he has the size speed and power to become a dominant entity in the NFL.
Ray Aspuria (@JackAsspuria)
Obi Melifonwu: This Al Davis special is 6-foot-4, 4.43 wheels and can make plays. With Reggie Nelson’s age a factor, Obi gives Raiders a big safety to matchup with pesky tight ends.
Budda Baker: Smaller than you like at 5-10, 195, but plays with tremendous heart and high football IQ and instincts. Not a big hitter like Karl Joseph, but every bit a ballhawk.
Malik McDowell: Physically (6-6, 295) impressive but passion for the game may not be. Explosive, sudden and a wrecking ball, the right coaching staff and locker room may tap into and bring out his immense potential.
Scott Sullivan (@ScottSully24)
A DT prospect:
Honestly, I don’t study film and claim to know something about the interior line prospects. But I do know this, with the loss of Stacey McGee in free agency and the release of Dan Williams. The Raiders basically have no DT’s to speak of right now outside of Jelly Ellis. Reggie will hopefully pick at least a couple to add talent and much needed depth at the spot.
RB Christian McCaffery:
What looked like a steal at #24 earlier in this process, he could be gone by the time the Raiders pick rolls around. Everyone says Fournette is the most NFL ready back, but McCaffery may be the most complete and the more durable back. He does have some miles which could be concerning but if he’s there at #24 I wouldn’t hesitate at all if I were Reggie to select him. And I’ll say this; even if the Raiders add Marshawn Skittles Lynch I would still pull the trigger on McCaffery.
OT Cam Robinson
With Donald Penn nearing the end of the career it would be nice to add his heir apparent. Look no further than the monster that is Cam Robinson. He anchored the best line in college football at Alabama for multiple years. LT is not a pressing need, but if he’s there why not take him? He can be the 6th OL which would be an upgrade to last year’s 6th man Menelik Watson (and healthier). And, he gets to learn for a year under Mike Tice.
Josh Alvarez (@Raider7597)
1st Round: LB Zach Cunningham Vanderbilt
This guy is real. With that said, he needs to break down a little more. The 35 missed tackles the last 2 years is a concern. Yet, Norton and Del Rio will help him with that. He also led the SEC in tackles plus 16.5 of those being tackles for loss.
2nd Round: DE DeMarcus Walker, Florida State
Aldon Smith’s replacement. Walker has a great motor and can play outside and move inside on rush downs, a la Mario Edwards.
3rd Round: DT Vincent Taylor, Oklahoma State
When I watch this guy’s film, all I see is a guy collapses the pocket. Additionally, he can play the nose too. At first, he’ll be a rotational guy. All things considered, Taylor will fit into a third-down pass rush role.