Thus far, I have loved what the Raiders have done in the NFL Draft, albeit the Raiders took a defensive tackle that I had overlooked. Wrong I was, to do so.
Many of the defensive tackles I had read up on had stamina problems and likely aren't three-down players in the National Football League.
LaMarr Houston from Texas, however, should give the Raiders the run-stopping force that has been lacking on a notoriously bad run defense.
It seems the biggest knock on him is that while he has pass-rush potential, it has yet to be fully realized. However, his strength in run stopping fits exactly what the Raiders need.
Houston also helped free up pass rushing beasts, Sergio kindle and Brian Orakpo, which bodes well for the Raiders front seven.
There was much talk going into this draft about whether the Raiders would trade Kirk Morrison and/or Thomas Howard, but with the addition of Houston, I would be comfortable in keeping either linebacker.
When the third round came around, I was ecstatic that OT Bruce Campbell was still on the board, yet the Raiders selected OT Jared Veldheer of Hillsdale.
Veldheer seems like a good fit at right-guard, which would not bother me. Veldheer seems to be the next in a trend of rookies that can come in for the Raiders and fill unglamorous roles.
After the third round, Campbell is still on the board.
Two players that won't be around after the fourth round are Campbell and cornerback Akwasi Owusu-Ansah. Coach Cable mentioned interest in a cornerback, and so, the Raiders should be aggressive in getting one that would fit the Raider defense.
Interesting names still available: tackle Bruce Campbell; center Matthew Tennant; fullback Clay Harbor; halfback Joe McKnight; cornerback Akwasi Owusu-Ansah; guard Brandon Carter; nose tackle Cam Thomas.