As I stated in my previous article, "Oakland Raiders 2010 Draft: Analyzing and Grading each pick," the Oakland Raiders did a great job in the draft, but didn't address all the team needs.
Al Davis and Tom Cable did not address the offensive guard or fullback positions. This oversight has been remedied to a certain extent with undrafted free agents.
There were some other players from different positions invited to rookie camp as well.
This slide show will introduce you to each of them and provide some insight as to the reason they were asked to participate in camp.
Here we go...
Is it just me, or does Alex Parsons look like he could be Jon Ritchie's brother? The official picture of him on the USC website shows an even more uncanny resemblance. But, I digress...
Offensive guard is a position that Davis and Cable overlooked in the draft. They have now addressed that spot with Alex Parsons from Southern Cal.
Parsons started at the guard position for USC in 2008 and 2009. He is also capable of playing center. This gives the Raiders even more versatility to move players around and create a lot of different packages.
What I like most about Parsons is that he started his career at defensive tackle. That means he has a nasty disposition and the athleticism to be a real force once he adjusts to the NFL game.
He was recruited by Pete Carroll, which means he should have the talent to perform and I have no idea why this guy wasn't drafted. It will be up to coach Cable to unlock and unleash his talent.
This was a great pick up for the Raiders and I look for Parsons to make the team and provide depth to the guard and center positions.
Fullback was another position that the Raiders ignored in the draft.
Perhaps it was because they knew something about Manase Tonga. This kid is a great prospect and will almost certainly make the team in 2010.
He started a total of 11 games in his senior year, but saw action in all 12. This four year letterman is a solid blocker and will push Luke Lawton to start from the get-go.
The best thing about Tonga is the fact that he is an very good receiver out of the backfield. He actually had more receptions than carries in his career at BYU.
He isn't the most athletic player in the world, but Tonga is an adequate short-yardage, downhill runner.
I think Tonga will make the team and see significant playing time in the 2010 season.
I have found absolutely no confirmation if Brashton Satele and Sampson Satele are related in any way. They look similar and are from the same school, but the name Satele in Hawaii may be like Smith or Jones on the mainland.
I have no idea!
Satele is an intriguing pick-up for the Raiders.
The team selected two great linebacker prospects in the draft and two more in free agency. If you add these four to the existing linebackers on the team, this pick-up might make you scratch your head a little.
In five years of eligibility at the University of Hawaii, Satele missed two full seasons due to shoulder injuries. This is a little concerning, but if he has the talent, he deserves a shot at the NFL.
I don't expect him to make the team for the 2010 season, but he has a real chance at the practice squad. This would be good for both parties because it will give Satele time to develop and the team the time to fully evaluate his durability.
Just like linebacker, defensive end is another position at which the Raiders are extremely deep. Therefore, I'm not sure of the reasoning behind this pick-up.
Alex Daniels is a high-motor guy that is a bit undersized at 258 pounds to play defensive end in the NFL.
The fact that he played running back at the University of Minnesota before transferring to the Bearcats tells me that he is highly athletic, but his technique might be a little suspect—avoiding tackles is a lot different than making them!
There are also some off the field issues to take into account. Daniels has done a good job rebuilding his reputation, but with the way the NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has been operating, this pick may come back to bite the team should those issues resurface.
I don't expect Daniels to make the 53-man roster, but he could be a useful player on the practice squad.
After the emergence of Louis Murphy and Chaz Shillens, along with the potential of Darius Heyward-Bey and the drafting of Jacoby Ford, I wouldn't have expected the Raiders to bring in another wide receiver...but they did.
Guy is drastically undersized at only 5'8" 175 pounds. He isn't ridiculously fast, running in the mid 4.5s at his pro day. However, he did excel in the short shuttle, three-cone drill, and had a 35" vertical jump. These are good numbers, but not spectacular.
I don't feel the good workout numbers make up for his lack of size, but he can catch the ball and is a good returner.
But again, with Jacoby Ford, Nick Miller, and Johnny Lee Higgins on the roster, did we need another returner?
I'm not so sure.
I really doubt that Guy will make the team, but he is almost a lock for the practice squad due to his return skills.
Overall, head coach Tom Cable has a lot of good young talent to work with, but a lot of hard decisions to make before the final 53 man roster is set.
We all know how well the Raiders did in the draft, but they continued the great selections into the undrafted rookie portion of the 2010 offseason.
I really like the Manase Tonga and Alex Parsons choices—look for them both to make the final 53 man roster.
I'm not as excited about Alex Daniels and Brashton Satele, but they each have a real good chance at the practice squad.
I'm not as optimistic about the future of Trent Guy. He is just too small and will be competing with Jacoby Ford to be the returner. Plus, the team already has 10 wide receivers on the roster. However, his return skills will likely get him on the practice squad at the very least.
In all, this offseason's rookie camp and training camp will be interesting with a lot of competition at every position. Competition makes all players at a given position work that much harder and perform that much better. That is a good thing for the team as a whole.
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