The NFL Draft, a place where college hopefuls enter in hopes of fulfilling a dream to play for an NFL team. As Raiders fans, we patiently await newcomers that we envision cheering for every sunday and improve our beloved team. Lately, it's been hit or miss throughout the 2k's. We've had our share of awesome picks (Asomugha, Miller, Howard), and our not so awesome picks (Russell, Gallery as Tackle, Washington). With three games left in this season, we speculate and look forward to next draft which seems likely to be another Top 10 pick.
Like many other Raiders fans, I have also identified the problem areas: O-Line, DT and LB. And I would love if the Raiders would adress those dire needs with their 1st Round pick. As history suggests, Oakland has had more success filling those needs in later rounds with players such as LB Howard, LB Morrison, OL Henderson, OL Robbins, OL Wisniewski, DT Coleman, and DT Jackson.
Let's take a stroll down memory lane and look at the Raiders success at filling those needs through 1st rd selections within the past 20 years.
2004- Oakland's latest attempt to improve the Offensive line by drafting Tackle Robert Gallery. While the move did not work out, Gallery began to flourish as a Guard.
2002- In order to fill the void left by longtime LB Biekert, Raiders selected MLB Harris to hold the spot for the next 10 years. Harris was not what Oakland had envisioned and was inevitably traded.
1999- Following the selection of a very good O-lineman in Mo Collins the previous year, Oakland selected Matt Stinchcomb to further beef-up the O-Line. Years of decent plays and injuries prevented Stinchcomb from becoming what Oakland expected with their pick.
1998- Selected later in the 1st Rd after CB Woodson, Oakland got themselves a powerful O-Lineman in Collins. Unfortunately, injuries cut short what appeared to be a very solid career.
1997- Selected in the Top 5, the late DT Russell brought potential of a pass-rushing and Run-stuffing DT. Unfortunately, a tape scandal and drug abuse derailed his once-promising career before a car accident claimed his life.
1994- In hopes of improving their LB corps, Oakland selected LB Fredrickson with their 1st Rd pick. Unfortunately, Fredrickson never developed into the LB Oakland was expecting.
1992- Looking to improve their Run-stopping defense, Oakland selected DT McGlockton out of Clemson. Despite a few decent years with Oakland, McGlockton didn't develop into the Monster DT worth a 1st Rd pick.