August 7, 2012; Baton Rouge, LA, USA; LSU Tigers cornerback Tyrann Mathieu (7) during LSU football media day at the Charles McClendon Practice Facility. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Why the Oakland Raiders Will Regret Not Drafting Tyrann Mathieu

Jan 9, 2012; New Orleans, LA, USA; LSU Tigers cornerback Tyrann Mathieu (7) during the first half of the 2012 BCS National Championship game against the Alabama Crimson Tide at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

When Tyrann Mathieu parted ways with LSU and their football program, I was stunned.

How could it be? Mathieu, one of the nation’s top collegiate football players, being dismissed by his elite LSU football squad? As a big fan of his, I couldn’t believe it.

Later, however, I realized why the SEC-powerhouse made the decision that they did. Mathieu reportedly suffered from a huge marijuana problem, and had failed well over 10 drug tests during his time in Louisiana with his school.

It was sad to see such a prolific football player seemingly throw away his entire future and career because of substance abuse, but in reality, it happens a lot in sports. And some players let it bring them down totally, and others bounce back.

Mathieu bounced back.

He declared for the 2013 NFL Draft and began extensive work with himself, while also working out with guys like former LSU standout Patrick Peterson and Hall of Famer Deion Sanders.

The Oakland Raiders had several chances to draft the “Honey Badger” but failed to do so, which I believe will make them regretful in the future.

Mathieu is a stud on the football field. There is absolutely no denying it. During his time at LSU, he made a career off of explosive punt returns, forced fumbles, monstrous hits, and intercepted passes. He was (and still is) a phenomenal playmaker. He’s everywhere on the football field and he is a player that you absolutely have to account for every time you step on the football field.

If you don’t believe me, check out this highlight video of him and then get back to me:

Mathieu is a dynamic playmaker, and that is exactly what the Raiders need. Somebody to step in and make key plays, especially down the stretch, to win football games for the organization.

Another aspect as to why Mathieu would fit in beautifully with the Oakland Raiders is because he is somebody that is desperate to prove himself.

I believe that Mathieu had the clear-cut potential to become a legitimate first-round draft pick in the NFL Draft had he not been dismissed from LSU and had his substance abuse problem. But due to the fact that all of that actually did happen, several teams had their doubts about him, and he suddenly slipped to the third round.

But the bottom line is that Mathieu has a lot of critics and a lot of doubters as to whether or not he has the winning mentality or if he is actually over his drug problem like he has said he is.

He is a guy that has every reason to go out on the NFL field and prove his doubters wrong. To prove to the people that passed up on him that they made a mistake. And when guys go out and play with that mentality, they usually play their hearts out and put their best work forth.

That is exactly what the Raiders need. Another young gun who is ready to play and ready to prove that he is legitimate. It’s sad to me that they passed up on the Mathieu but they had some other solid draft picks, including Houston cornerback D.J. Hayden, who is a bright young prospect with a bright future ahead of him. The Arizona Cardinals should be thankful to have Mathieu joining their organization, as he will also be paired up with one of his closest friends and former teammate, Patrick Peterson.


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Tags: NFL Oakland Raiders Tyrann Mathieu

  • Joe InMaryland

    The Raiders already drafted a guy from LSU that liked his purple juice. Guess what his future was in the NFL? I don’t blame the Raiders for not drafting him, and don’t care just how great he was. GO RAIDERS!!!!

    • Brian Banifatemi

      Thanks for the comment.

      Yes, drafting JaMarcus Russell ended up miserably for the Raiders, but don’t you think that Mathieu is worth the risk?

      Dude’s got so much potential.

      • Bill Carter

        Hell no

        • Bill Carter

          A team rebuilding their roster doesn’t need a possible head case like Mathieu, all hes looking to do is to get paid, not prove himself,….now hes going to get money to go with that 14 yr olds brain hes carries around…trouble.

          • Bob Yost

            No I don’t believe that all he’s looking to do is get paid,… Dude is a straight up BALLER!! They don’t call him Honey Badger for no reason, or because he’s sweet. They call him that because the honey badger is the meanest, most unstoppable animal on earth, & because it fits his style of play. This kid is gonna be one of the greatest of all time.

  • Esteban Lopez

    I would have to disagree. The Raiders need players that are 100% committed to playing football. Someone who has failed 10 drug test, is not a player we would want on our team. Regardless of how much potential they may have.

  • Hangtownie

    Ricky Williams was an incredible talent as well. Raiders don’t need incredible talent like that.

  • C Banks

    The problem here is that Oakland would be a bad off the field city for him to play in. I ought to know, I grew up there.

    Imagine trying to kick the weed habit in Oakland, Ca with all the cannabis clubs and everything else you want to find out here. I’m sure managment thought about that when they made that consideration.

    Just a bad idea from the start.

  • mike scarpino

    You don’t waste a third round pick on a nickle back when you have a depleted roster especially one with issues

    • Bob Yost

      It would be a waste of a pick only if you selected a player that had 3rd round talent. Tyrann Mathew on the other hand, was potentially a #1 overall pick, well until he smoked a few blunts he was anyway.

      That makes him a steal, in fact, since I believe he will be among the best db’s EVER, he’s probably the steal of not only this draft, but of the last several, as well as the next few… yeah, probably shouldn’t waste a 3rd round pick on a pothead like him. Lame.