The Raiders' 2010 draft seemed almost perfect. We got a new leader for our defense in Rolando McClain on day one. And then on day two we addressed both lines of scrimmage, just like Tom Cable suggested we would in his press conference the night before.
In the second round we filled our biggest need on defense drafting a big 300 pound defensive tackle. Actually, wait, that's not right. According to Tom Cable at a press conference following day two of the draft, we drafted a 300 pound defensive end.
"I think Lamarr Houston will play defensive end in our scheme," Cable said."We expect the transition to be easy for him, he played it the first half of his college career."
Tom Cable went on to talk about his ability and what he brings to the team. Houston is a very versatile defender who has played at all four defensive line positions in the 4-3. He also has experience playing FB.
Later a reporter asked, "When you say end you mean in a 4-3 scheme, doesn't that leave you a little light at the tackle position?"
"No," Cable answered."You'll see the plan when we get there. It's good, you'll like it."
"We have some things that we're putting together to get it all sorted out," Cable said. "You'll see it at mini-camp."
Cable was then asked why he saw Houston as more of a defensive end.
He replied, "Because what we're trying to do is become a little more physical in our defensive front. I think that's a little obvious with what we've drafted with our first two picks and you might see some people moved around a little bit.
"It gives us a chance to line him up at left end, let him go wrestle with a tight-end all day and I think he's gonna win in a lot of those battles."
This raises two big questions. First of all, what is this plan Cable has?
Is it related to the draft? Is it a new scheme? Or maybe even a trade the Raiders are working on? Or is it possible Tom Cable is just blowing smoke, pulling our leg?
And second, Tom Cable said, "You might see some guys moved around a little."
Really? Like who?
Does that mean Richard Seymour is moving inside to tackle next to Tommy Kelly? Or maybe Desmond Bryant has put on a considerable amount of bulk and is going to start next to Tommy Kelly? Maybe both? Or could it be something else?
Like Tom Cable said, we will have to wait until training camp to find out.
Cable also had a lot of good things to say about Jason Veldheer. When asked about his learning curve and whether he would play the left or right, Tom Cable had this to say:
"I see him going right into it, being the third guy and competing to be a starter somewhere. That's why you draft him that early."
So as of right now it would seem Mario Henderson and Khalif Barnes are still the starters, but Veldheer is hot on their tail.
Also, Cable was asked if Clausen was ever considered and before the reporter could even finish his sentence Tom Cable interrupted,"No, no!" That's a strong vote of confidence for one of the QBs on our roster. Which one? I don't know.
At Thursday's press conference, Cable said priority was the line of scrimmage and the backfields. Will the Raiders stick to that plan through Saturday?
For more on Cable's full press conference click here.