I took part in a couple of mock drafts this week. It's always fun playing the role of general manager.
In both cases Michael Crabtree was off the board. So I chose between Missouri WR Jeremy Maclin and Alabama OT Andre Smith.
In both cases I went with ... Smith.
I wouldn't be shocked if the Raiders selected Maclin. I think he's very similar to Johnnie Lee Higgins (though he is bigger) and has good speed. But I'm holding Tom Cable to his word that upgrading the protection around JaMarcus Russell is a top priortiy.
There are questions about Smith's maturity , but he could start at right tackle for the Raiders as a rookie.
If rumored interest from Cincinatti in Smith is true and he's gone at No. 6, I'd expect Maclin to be the pick.
*Some of you probably noticed I haven't been blogging as much lately and that my name even showed up on a Sacramento Kings story. That's because I'm in the midst of transitioning to covering basketball at The Bee.
I'm not sure exactly when I'll no longer be following the Raiders full-time. But I'll do my best to keep updating things while I give myself a crash course in the Kings, the NBA Draft and all that is basketball related.
Oh yes, this should be fun for someone raised on Laker basketball.