Oakland Raiders: Options for the 2015 NFL Draft


It’s quite obvious that the Oakland Raiders will be picking pretty early in the 2015 NFL Draft. Their record, which is the league’s worse record thus far at 0-10, is dictating that the Raiders will be picking in the top three spots. So how should the Raiders’ draft picks be used?

The Raiders would have many options with such a high draft pick. The Raiders can use a future star at just about every position on the team, so it’s easy to assume what General Manager Reggie McKenzie might try to do when it’s his time to make the selection (assuming he’s still GM).

The Raiders could use a top wide receiver like Alabama’s Amari Cooper or a top defensive lineman like USC Leonard Williams. Maybe the Raiders decide to give up on Derek Carr and draft a quarterback such as Jameis Winston of Florida State or Oregon’s Marcus Mariota. Any one of those players could boost the Raiders with talent, but maybe drafting one great player isn’t the best solution.

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Carr is definitely the real deal, so the Raiders could use him to their advantage when it comes to making trades on Draft day. By dangling the idea of a possible trade for Carr or making their top selection available for a future quarterback like the above mentioned, it could help the Raiders in the long run. McKenzie needs to take that top-three pick and ship it out for the best ransom he could get. The St. Louis Rams are a great example of how this can be done.

In 2012, the Rams were able to trade their number two pick to Washington in exchange for two future first round picks (swapped spot two for six in 2012) and a second round pick. The Rams were able to get more picks by trading back with the Dallas Cowboys in that same 2012 draft to pick up another second round pick. The Rams gave the rest of the NFL the blueprint for future valuable high picks, and the Raiders should be ever so grateful to the Rams for the heist they were able to pull off.

So what does all that mean for the Raiders? It means the Raiders could use the bait of Winston or Mariota for multiple future picks, just as the Rams were able to with Robert Griffin III. Imagine the Raiders trading back and grabbing multiple first and second round picks while still having Carr as their future star quarterback.

With the Raiders in dire need of depth, it would be best for them to move back in the Draft. There’s already a rumor that Philadelphia Eagles Head Coach Chip Kelly wants to move up in the Draft to grab his former college quarterback Mariota, so the rumor mill is already churning.

If the Raiders want to become a better team, they need to look at the bigger picture and do what’s best, and that’s getting the most bang for their buck. Every Raiders fan is tired of the “rebuilding” term, but it has to happen seeing how Dennis Allen and McKenzie weren’t able to get the job done.

Be patient, Raider Nation. It’s been a long decade, but with Carr and Khalil Mack as the kings to the Raiders’ chess game, it should be a little more exciting during the rebuilding phase game once again.