Everything is in front of the Raiders on Sunday. A win over the Denver Broncos and three other favorable results would vault them into the AFC playoffs.
While Jon Gruden focuses on the task at hand, some possible future Raiders could be taking the field Saturday when the 2019 College Football Playoffs Semifinals. The first tilt in the double-dip will feature the No. 1-seeded LSU Tigers and the No. 4-seeded Oklahoma Sooners in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
The top-seeded Tigers were led by Heisman Trophy winner and presumptive No. 1 overall draft pick Joe Burrow. The senior quarterback put together an electric campaign in LSU's revamped offense and has put himself on the fast track to being the next face of the Cincinnati Bengals.
Meanwhile, the Sooners survived a midseason hiccup against Kansas State to win the Big 12 championship on the back of an improved defense and electric plays by star receiver CeeDee Lamb and quarterback Jalen Hurts.
The Raiders have two first-round draft picks in the upcoming draft and have a number of needs players on both teams could fill. While Burrow won't be wearing silver and black, six other players who suit up Saturday would be a great fit for the next great Raiders draft class.
Here are six players for Raiders fans and scouts to watch in the 2019 Peach Bowl.
CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma
This one is a no-brainer. If Lamb is on the board when the Raiders go on the clock, the Silver and Black should run to the podium to make him the newest Raider.
The Oklahoma junior receiver has all the tools to be a No. 1 pass-catcher in the NFL. At 6-foot-2, 191 pounds, Lamb has the size needed to play on the perimeter in the NFL. He is a wizard at creating separation at all levels. His hands are tremendous and he is otherworldy in contested-catch situations. He doesn't have lightning speed, but it's good enough to make big plays after the catch and be a downfield threat.
He might end up being the best wide receiver in a loaded draft class, and he's the most NFL ready.
CeeDee Lamb with 10 recs for 171 yds/ 3 tds vs. Texas— Connor Rogers (@ConnorJRogers) October 15, 2019
He's a cheat code after the catch, already one of my favorite players in this class pic.twitter.com/MDrlwMQhT2
Oh, and he rocked a Fred Biletnikoff jersey after torching Texas.
Make the pick.
K'Lavon Chaisson, Edge, LSU
Despite drafting Clelin Ferrell and Maxx Crosby last year, the Raiders still need help on the edge. Oakland's pass rush enters Week 17 with only 30 sacks and needs to find a way to generate more pressure on opposing quarterbacks if they plan to take the next step.
Enter: K'Lavon Chaisson.
The redshirt sophomore has the physical tools that make you think he can be a star on the edge in the NFL. He entered the season needing to show consistency and stay healthy. He had moments of greatness. He beat potential top-10 pick Andrew Thomas on the edge in the SEC Championship Game. He gave Alabama's Alex Leatherwood some issues as well.
Still, he needs to add some strength and could use another year at LSU. If he comes out, the Raiders likely will look his way.
Grant Delpit, S, LSU
Yes, the Raiders drafted Johnathan Abram in the first round last year. No, that shouldn't preclude them from looking at Delpit if he's on the board in the middle of the first round.
The LSU junior has had a down season after a breakout sophomore season that saw him combine for 12 interceptions and pass breakups. Injuries have contributed to a lot of missed tackles for Delpit, but he still only has allowed nine catches in coverage.
As #LSU's Grant Delpit goes for Jim Thorpe award tonight, a few plays that help explain what makes him so elite -- even if stats aren't eye-popping.
1. Look at the range/effort to get DJ Williams OB here. Auburn settles for FG, loses 23-20. 1 tackle.pic.twitter.com/cP5L8bFATg— Jeff Nowak (@Jeff_Nowak) December 12, 2019
4. Another great blitz/read/tackle by Grant Delpit here that that forces a third-and-long. pic.twitter.com/oVeXGnpvi5— Jeff Nowak (@Jeff_Nowak) December 12, 2019
5. You may remember this one from last weekend. Grant Delpit with the blitz and sack with Georgia still well in touch during the SEC Championship. You won't find many safeties out there with better timing on these. pic.twitter.com/FhXcB7A8Xh— Jeff Nowak (@Jeff_Nowak) December 12, 2019
Pairing Delpit with Abram and Trayvon Mullen could give the Raiders the makings of the next elite NFL secondary.
Kenneth Murray, LB, Oklahoma
If you've watched the Raiders at all this season, you know there's a big hole in the middle of their defense. After Vontaze Burfict was suspended for the season following a Week 4 hit against the Indianapolis Colts, the Raiders' defense struggled to keep it together.
The Raiders have had a massive need at linebacker for years, and Murray might be the man to lock down the middle of the Silver and Black's defense.
A freaky athlete, the Oklahoma junior can cover sideline-to-sideline and is a sure tackler. After leading the Sooners in tackles last season, Murray upped his total from 51 to 64 this season.
He'd be a slam-dunk pick for the Raiders.
Kristian Fulton, CB, LSU
There's little chance the Raiders will take a cornerback in the first round and that's where Fulton will go.
Still, if he's available when the Raiders pick, they will be tempted.
Fulton was the highest-graded cornerback in the SEC. He's an elite cover corner who can run with the best receivers in the game. He'll get a tasty matchup Saturday when he gets the opportunity to try and shut down Lamb.
Mullen is starting to blossom into a shutdown corner, and while corner isn't an immediate need, Fulton would go nicely on the other side.
LSU CB Kristian Fulton may be the top senior CB in the country. He does not back down from any WR, can press and play off. Here he shows the closing speed and hand-eye coordination to break up a pass despite the scheme giving big cushion to prevent a downfield play. #SnapScout pic.twitter.com/JhdOga2dDJ— Chad Reuter (@chad_reuter) December 2, 2019
Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU
If the Raiders choose to not address the wide receiver position with their two first-round draft picks, they could snag a number of solid pass-catchers on Day 2.
The guy who will be occupying the slot for LSU on Saturday will be worth a look.
After transitioning from an outside receiver to the slot man this season, Jefferson has thrived along with everyone else on the Tigers' offense.
At 6-foot-3, 193 pounds, Jefferson caught 88 passes for 1,207 yards and 14 touchdowns for LSU. He has elite ball skills and is a beast after the catch.
Even if the Raiders select an A-plus receiver like Lamb in Round 1, they should continue to bolster their arsenal with a guy like Jefferson.