In all honesty, after the first round, I was not sure what the Oakland Raiders were aiming for in the draft. However, after the trading down that netted them former Clemson standout Trayvon Mullen, my perception changed. Did the Oakland Raiders actually possess a plan to shape their roster in the mold of their coach and general manager? Admittedly, the players selected on Thursday fit the Raiders perfectly. My only issue was where they fell in the draft. Meanwhile, the Raiders ignored the critics and ran their draft board to the best of their ability.
While the Raiders used the fourth overall pick to improve their pass rush, Ed Oliver or Josh Allen seemingly fit that role better. Although early on, insiders/draftniks thought of Ferrell as a top-5 pick. However, with the rise of Josh Allen and Ed Oliver, Ferrell’s perception fell. Yet, he was the same player. The Raiders apparently never wavered. Whether Quinnen Williams was their true top choice remains irrelevant. Most people figured Williams would not fall to fall. In hindsight, the Ferrell pick makes absolute sense. Considering what the team accomplished after sets their defense up for the next few years. Ferrell will occupy the role of primary pass rusher. As a result, the Raiders attempted to surround him with a good supporting cast.
Now, speculation swirled around the Raiders drafting a quarterback late for Jon Gruden to develop. He did not. Granted, Gruden’s penchant for saying wild, outlandish comments became part of Raiders lore in 2018. Therefore, thinking about drafting a young passer to coach up did not appear far-fetched. Before the draft, Gruden reiterated that he wholeheartedly stood behind Carr. Under those circumstances, he was right. However, 2019 could be Derek Carr’s last chance to show that he belongs with Gruden’s Raiders
In reality, the Oakland Raiders demonstrated uncharacteristic restraint during the draft. Instead of picking a slew of developmental talents, the team began to cross off needs. With certainty of purpose and apparent clear eyes, Mayock and Gruden set out to build their franchise. Now, before anyone gets carried away, these picks need to pan out. The Raiders executed a three-day plan. More importantly, the team gave the Raiders something they lacked: hope.