Raiders

Raiders

The Raiders almost have as many first-round draft picks (three) this year as they did wins (four) in 2018. They're in the perfect place to begin their rebuild, but they can't fail with players that should hold the keys to their future. 

Will they place more of an emphasis on offense or defense moving forward? Mel Kiper Jr. has released his first NFL mock draft of 2019 and he has the Raiders addressing both sides of the ball in the first round. 

No. 4: Greedy Williams, CB, LSU

Cornerback isn't the Raiders' top need on defense, but they can certainly use help in their secondary. Former first-round pick Gareon Conley will man one side of the field, but it's uncertain who his partner will be. 

Kiper Jr. compares a former Raiders nemesis to Williams, one who was named to five straight Pro Bowls from 2013 to 2017: 

Williams is a big, 6-foot-3 corner with long arms and lockdown potential. The comp I've made for him is Aqib Talib.

The Raiders ranked 14th in the NFL with 14 interceptions in 2018. Williams, a redshirt sophomore, had eight interceptions and 19 passes defended in his two years at LSU. 

No. 24: Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma

Speed, speed, and more speed. The Raiders could use it and Brown has it. He's listed at only 5-foot-9 and 168 pounds, but he's a legitimate deep threat and the Raiders need to give Derek Carr some help

 

Here's what Kiper Jr. says about Brown: 

Brown is going to be one of the fastest prospects in this draft. He can run every route, and he's tremendous after the catch.

In his two years with the Sooners, Brown caught 132 passes for 2,413 yards and 17 touchdowns. 

No. 27: Irv Smith Jr., TE, Alabama

Speaking of helping Carr, here's another weapon for the quarterback. The Raiders' leading receiver this season was tight end Jared Cook, but he's turning 32 and will be a free agent. 

I mentioned Cook earlier, and he's a free agent, so this is going to be a need for Oakland. Smith had 44 catches and seven touchdowns for the Crimson Tide this season, and he is a really good player.

Smith tops off a first round haul without the Raiders addressing their need at edge rusher, but certainly adding to Jon Gruden's offense and a gaining a potential star at cornerback.