Oakland Raiders: Geno Smith Can't Be the Pick

Jeff Spiegel@jeffspiegelContributor IIMarch 28, 2013

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 29:  Geno Smith #12 of the West Virginia Mountaineers looks at the scoreboard after a safety against the Syracuse Orange in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium on December 29, 2012 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

With a myriad of needs and only one pick in the first two rounds, it's safe to say the Oakland Raiders can't solve all of their problems with the No. 3 pick in the 2013 NFL draft.

That said, however, drafting Geno Smith wouldn't really solve any of them.

In his latest mock draft, ESPN's Todd McShay has Oakland taking the quarterback from West Virginia with the No. 3 pick—and as part of Raider Nation, that terrifies me.

Here's the thing: There isn't anyone out there who is deeming Geno Smith a future star in the NFL. A good quarterback? Maybe, but not a star.

So why, if you're general manager Reggie McKenzie, would you waste such a precious pick on a guy who isn't going to make a major impact on your franchise?

And I'm not talking about an immediate impact—I'm talking long term.

With the moves made this offseason, one thing is clear in Oakland: fans can get used to the top of the draft for the next couple of years.

So if we're assuming that we'll have another top five pick in 2014, why waste the pick this year on a guy who would be considered a reach anyway (McShay said Smith grades out as a late first-rounder)?

Why not suffer through a season of Terrelle Pryor if Palmer is gone instead of looking for a short-term solution at quarterback?

The move for Oakland here is to accumulate as many picks as possible so that they can add as many young players as they can. But if that's not an option, the move should be to pick the best player on the board, regardless of position.

Outside of wide receiver and running back (and even that's up for debate), the Raiders could use help everywhere on the field, so why compromise the pick by reaching for a sexy position—quarterback?

I'm sure Geno Smith will have a fine career in the NFL, maybe even win some playoff games, but Smith isn't a franchise-changer at quarterback, and for a team with so many larger needs, he can't be the pick this season.

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