Update #7: The D’Angelo Hall fiasco: The Raiders appear ready to trade their 2nd round pick to the Falcons for D’Angelo Hall, who by the way appears to be insane. This makes very little sense because by giving Hall the extension that will come with this trade, the Raiders will inevitably raise the price of Nnamdi Asomugha’s franchise tag. It would be great to have two of the league’s best cornerbacks on roster, but I’m not sure this is financially prudent. Especially with a high 2nd pick being the cost.
Update #6: Raiders sign Drew Carter. JaMarcus Russell now has a good set of wide receivers, with diverse skills and great physical attributes. Wide Reciever now becomes a secondary draft issue. An excellent acquisition, in my opinion.
Update #5: The Raiders restructured the deal of Dominic Rhodes. This should reinforce the idea that McFadden should not be the target at #4, barring some sort of pre-arranged trade.
Update #4: Raiders sign Javon Walker and Kwame Harris. So now they’ve addressed their major needs at WR, S, and RB, as well as replacing Barry Sims with their new probable LT. This screams to me that they’re gonna draft a DT or OL in the first round. Though I’m kind of worried about the rate at which Al Davis is spending money, they have saved a ton with the release of Barry Sims, the retirement of Warren Sapp, and the restructuring of Robert Gallery’s deal. There’s also the likely release or reworking of LaMont Jordan’s deal, which might also save some more money. And though Kwame has not exactly been successful so far, I have faith in Tom Cable to take his massive potential and turn him into a reliable player.
Update #3: Raiders sign Gibril Wilson to shore up the safety position. Unless they plan to trade Michael Huff, they’re now set at safety.
go back in time, after the cut.
Update #2: Barry Sims was released. I seems clear that OL is now going to be an even greater area of need.
Update: Now that Jerry Porter has signed with the Jaguars, WR becomes a bigger priority. If the Raiders want to really spend some money, Bernard Berrian, Bryant Johnson, and DJ Hackett are all available, as well as Donte Stallworth, Andre Davis, and Jabar Gafney. If they go the draft route, they could trade into the bottom of the first round for Mario Manningham or draft James Hardy or Early Doucet in the second.
In 49ers and UCLA Bruins news, the team signed DeShaun Foster today, a move that provides Frank Gore with a competent backup and eliminates the need to draft a running back until the last few rounds, if at all.
The Raiders re-signed DT/DE Tommy Kelly, one of the team’s better run stoppers who is currently rehabbing from a torn ACL. The Raiders made Kelly the highest paid D-Lineman in football according to the contract, but in reality he’s getting essentially 3 years at 6 million per year. Kelly will do a fine job at either DT or DE, but it raises some interesting questions about the Raiders’ draft plans. Would they still be willing to commit to a Glenn Dorsey or a Sedrick Ellis after paying out so much in back to back years for Kelly and Terdell Sands? Should a team be comfortable with so much money tied up in one area?
I’m a firm believer that the team should avoid getting a RB like Darren McFadden. Between Justin Fargas and Michael Bush I’m pretty happy with the team’s prospects and I don’t think a zone blocking team needs a great talent at the RB position to produce a good year. With Kelly now tied up with so much money, some say that it makes sense to wait and draft a DT in the second or 3rd round to avoid locking up so much money at the D-line.
If that’s the teams’ line of thinking, where do they turn to next with that pick? Offensive line is a big need, but when you’re looking for system players there’s no need to draft a big name. QB, TE, and CB are all locked up, and there’s no receiver or safety worthy of a pick that high. That being said, it probably makes the most sense to just go with Ellis or Dorsey unless the team decides to trade down.