This year the Raiders made excellent choices early in the draft. Nobody saw DHB and Mike Mitchell coming in the first two rounds last year. This year the Raider Nation recieved gifts in the 1st two rounds with defensive stalwarts Rolando McClain and Lamarr Houston. It was good to see the Raiders finally make some very smart choices in the early part of the draft.
What Al Davis and the Raiders have been good at is finding players in the later rounds of the draft that end up being solid, productive players. Guys like Chaz Schilens(7th), Tyvon Branch(4th), Michael Bush(4th), Louis Murphy(4th), and Desmond Bryant(udfa) all seem to have a bright future with the Oakland Raiders.
This year the Al Davis took CB Walter McFadden from Auburn in round 5. The 6' 180 lbs CB was an AP second-team ALL-SEC selection as a senior. He had 46 tackles, 14 PD, and 6 INTS. Two of those INTs he returned for touchdowns, including a 100 yard INT return in the Outback Bowl against Northwestern's QB Mike Kafka who the Eagles drafted in the 4th round.
Another thing I like about McFadden is that he was an SEC Academic Honor Roll recipient last year which tells us that he is very smart. He'll get to learn from the best in the game in teammate Nnamdi Asomugha. Walter should also have a smooth transition with former Auburn Tigers Jason Campbell and Quentin Groves on the team.
With the recent play of the CBs not named Nnamdi, Walter McFadden has a chance to climb the depth chart and see a lot of playing time this year. He doesn't have blazing speed but his 4.42 at his pro day proved he's fast enough to play at this level.
Here's how CBS Sports breaks down his Man Coverage.
Natural coverage skills. Rare timed speed, which translates well onto the field. Loose hips and quick feet to turn and run with WRs. Changes direction smoothly and shows a good burst to break on the ball. Quick, active hands for press coverage. Lacks the bulk of a press corner, but is very aggressive. Doesn't back down from the challenge of a bigger WR.
He also is known as a ball hawk and a scrappy tackler that isn't afraid of big RBs and WRs. He is considered a solid tackler in the open field. He wraps his guys up instead of going for the big hit.
Well what do you think? Is he yet another late round find by the Oakland Raiders?