Taking a cue from my boss (and colleague Matt Barrows) I'm taking a shot at predicting who the Raiders might nab in each round. I'm positive I'm off on several fronts because who really knows the mind of Al Davis?
Well here's what I think might be a good day for the Raiders.
Round 1 (seventh overall selection)
Michael Crabtree, WR, Texas Tech
Reports are Crabtree's attitude (not his foot injury) has potential suitors like Cleveland souring on the draft's top receiver. That should mean little to the Raiders who need a player that has shown he can be a playmaker. I like the idea of taking a franchise-type tackle like Eugene Monroe or Andre Smith. But if Crabtree is available the Raiders should make him the pick.
Round 2 (40th overall)
Phil Loadholt, OT, Oklahoma
The Raiders get lucky and a solid tackle prospect is still available. If things work out Loadholt starts at right tackle Week 1 and gives Tom Cable a very talented player to groom.There's no way the Raiders can go past the second round without addressing the offensive line.
Round 3 (71st overall)
Michael Johnson, DE, Georgia Tech
A freakish athlete (6-7, 266, 4.75 40-yard dash) that could be the eventual replacement to Derrick Burgess as soon as 2010.
Round 4 (126th overall)
Michael Hamlin, SS, Clemson
The Raiders find someone to add to the mix with Michael Huff, Tyvon Branch and Hiram Eugene.
Round 7 (216th overall)
Mike Wallace, WR, Mississippi
Why another receiver? He ran the 40 in 4.33 seconds and averaged 20.1 yards a catch.
*I didn't select a tight end or defensive tackle, but there's only so much you can do with five picks. Don't be surprised to see the Raiders try to add another pick via trade.
I can't wait to see how wrong I am tomorrow.