Raiders select LB Marquel Lee in fifth round of the 2017 NFL Draft

Raiders select LB Marquel Lee in fifth round of the 2017 NFL Draft

Position: Linebacker
College: Wake Forest
Height: 6-foot-3
Weight: 240 pounds
Selection: Fifth round, No. 168 overall

ALAMEDA – It took five full rounds, but the Raiders finally drafted an inside linebacker. They don’t have a starter in the middle and have razor thin depth at that position and weakside linebacker, with Jelani Jenkins as that position group’s only experienced member.

The Raiders could’ve addressed this pressing need earlier in the draft but followed their draft board and fortified other positions instead. General manager Reggie McKenzie finally added Lee to the mix.

McKenzie was forthright with Lee regarding the lack of depth at his position, and told Lee he'll have a chance to start. 

"Yeah, the general manager explained that to me, and everything and he said he wanted me to come in and compete at that spot," Lee said Saturday in a conference call. "That’s what I plan to do.”

He’s certainly the right size to play middle linebacker, at 6-foot-3 and 240 pounds with long arms. He’s was a team leader in college, and analysts say he takes a disciplined approach to his craft. He’s a solid run defender and does his job creating proper run fits.

Critics says his slow to adjust to misdirection, and doesn’t play fast enough in man coverage. His speed may have pushed Lee down the draft board some, which might hinder his ability to play inside in a Raiders scheme where inside linebackers are expected to have great range in coverage.

Lee is a decent blitzer, with 7.5 sacks as a senior. He also had 105 tackles, including 20 for a loss, and three forced fumbles in his final season.

He’ll compete for a role with linebackers already here, including Cory James and Ben Heeney. The Raiders might still look for a veteran addition. That includes 2016 starter Perry Riley, who remains on the open market.

Raiders middle linebackers are asked to cover and play sideline to sideline, responsibilities Lee is ready to handle.

"I was pretty good in coverage over my years," Lee said. "Just polishing up my attack on the ball and going after the ball, I think that’s where I need to improve myself. In coverage, I mean zone dropping, I have good hips, I’ve shown that I can cover at the combine. I mean, I do any of the drills and stuff at the combine that translate to the field. I feel like I can cover anybody.”

Report: Ndamukong Suh set to meet with Raiders


Report: Ndamukong Suh set to meet with Raiders

After visiting the Titans, Saints and Rams, free agent defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh will make a stop in the East Bay.

Recently released by the Dolphins, Suh will visit with the Raiders on Wednesday, according to ESPN.

The former No. 2 overall pick made it through just three seasons of a six-year, $114 million deal he signed with Miami prior to the 2015 season.

The 31-year-old Portland, Oregon native last made the Pro Bowl in 2016 and was last earned First-Team All Pro honors in 2014.

In 16 games with the Dolphins last season, Suh recorded 4.5 sacks and 48 combined tackles.

Reports: Former Broncos, Jets, Titans WR visiting Raiders


Reports: Former Broncos, Jets, Titans WR visiting Raiders

As the Raiders overhaul their receiving corps, they are meeting with a versatile veteran on Tuesday.

Eric Decker, who spent the 2017 season with the Titans, is visiting the Raiders, according to The Athletic and ESPN.

A third-round pick out of Minnesota in 2010, the 31-year-old Decker spent the first four seasons of his career with the Broncos. He put up huge numbers in 2012 and 2013 with 2,352 receiving yards and 24 total touchdowns over those two seasons.

He turned his success with the Broncos into a five-year, $36 million contract with the Jets. He lived up to the contract the first two seasons, but after playing in just three games in 2016, the Jets released him.

So far this offseason, the Raiders have added veteran Jordy Nelson and Griff Whalen while releasing Michael Crabtree and trading Cordarrelle Patterson to New England.