Our NFL Draft Analyst Kelly Kriner takes one more shot at the Raiders mock draft for 2019.
By now most draft fans have found their way over to the Draft Network and have done at least one mock draft on the draft generator. I really enjoy doing mocks on the site but there are some really glaring differences between where I would place players and their spots in the simulation.
I jumped into the fray and did a mock draft for the Raiders. A note: these are not picks I would make necessarily or what I think the Raiders will do.
Here’s how this artificial intelligence engine spit out my first robotic mock draft:
Pick 4: Josh Allen, EDGE, UK
With Murray, Bosa, Williams off the board at the top, this pick was a no brainer. Personally, I was hoping that Williams would fall to fourth but Allen is an elite prospect at the biggest pressing need. Other players I looked at for the 4th pick were Ed Oliver and Devin White. The Raiders should go defense at the top of the round and I believe the pick at #4 will be just that.
Pick 24: Noah Fant, TE, Iowa
The offense wasn’t something I focused on in the first round, but Fant falling gives the Raiders offense a dynamic TE for quarterback Derek Carr. More of a receiver than blocker, Fant has the size and speed to be an elite offensive weapon. His blocking ability is more than enough to help out in the run game but a road grader he is not. Clelin Ferrell and DeAndre Baker were very interesting options on the board. If Williams would have fallen to #4, then Ferrell would have been the obvious choice.
Pick 27: DeAndre Baker, CB, Georgia
I have had Baker going to the Raiders since my first mock draft months ago. He was the best corner in college football last year and unlike the other top CB prospects, which are scheme-dependent, Baker can play in any scheme. There are some red flags about his attitude and work ethic but it hasn’t shown up in his game yet.
AJ Brown and Nasir Adderley were other options at 27, but Baker’s talent was too much for me to pass up.
Pick 35: Dalton Risner, OT, Kansas State
With this pick, I would be playing Risner at guard knowing he can play up to four line positions in a pinch. Risner has great tape in the Big 12 but his work at the Senior Bowl sealed the deal for me. Great strength and technique will allow Risner to be a force on the offensive line for a decade. Chris Lindstrom was another option I considered. He is a guard only so Risner’s flexibility won the day. Josh Jacobs and Chris Winovich were also strongly considered. With some luck, that won’t happen on draft night. My Risner choice looks even better after my next pick.
Pick 106: Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama
I believe that there is exactly a zero percent chance that Jacobs falls to the fourth round. Ye, as we see every year somebody falls farther than they should. My #1 RB on the board will be a huge addition to the Raiders offense and a day one starter. This would, without a doubt, be the steal of the draft and he would be a difference maker. I didn’t consider anybody else with this pick because there is no other player even close to the upside of Jacobs.
Pick 140: Emeke Egbule, LB, Houston
Linebacker isn’t a pressing need this year with the addition of Las Vegas native Brandon Marshall, but I don’t believe he is the long term answer. Egubule has some impressive tape – all be it at a lower level of competition. He has some deceptive speed which allows him to fly around the ball. Some refinement in his game, and growth in reading the line, Egubule could be a solid starter in year two or three. The linebacker position was going to be the focus of this pick because the other players I looked at were Germaine Pratt and Tevon Coney. If the Raiders can grab any of these three at pick 140, they have a potential starter down the line.
Pick 218: Greg Dortch, WR, Wake Forrest
I have been a huge Dortch supporter for years now. His small size will keep him as a slot WR but slot WR is a starting spot on most offenses. His stock has fallen during the draft process due to a wrist injury which has kept him from working out at 100-percent. His speed and elusiveness will make him a top-notch punt returner as well. Safety was my other option with Sheldrick Redwine and Malik Gant both on the board. This late in the draft, Dortch offers huge upside for the Raiders offense.
Pick 235: Malik Gant, S, Marshall
Gant is the personification of boom or bust. He has great speed and a high motor, which leads to highlight plays and lowlight misses. For a seventh-round safety, Gant offers the traits, if fine-tuned, could lead to a starting safety down the line. His floor could be as an elite special teamer which is still a steal in the seventh round. Running back was going to be my focus in this round but Jacobs falling to the fourth changed that.
We all know mock drafts are just crap shoots. We’re all guessing based on the information we have but we don’t know what’s going on in the heads of the men who will actually make the choices.
Still, this is what I would do if I was in the draft room for the Raiders. A few of these picks I don’t believe will be available where they were taken in my mock draft, but for the purposes of this article, I followed the draft simulator. If trades were allowed, I would have looked to move one of the two late first round picks because the gap from 35 to 106 is too long in my book.
What do you think of my mock draft? Leave comments below.