Earlier today, Vittorio Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle tweeted out that the Raiders are not expected to bring back center Samson Satele. While many Raider fans are cheering, I am a little skeptical.
Satele was never up to par with the Pounceys or the Matt Birks, but he was good enough. He did a good enough job holding down the fort. More often than not, I would be open to someone else over Satele.
However, in an offseason like this, I am not as eager. The Raiders already have many holes on their team. Granted, the Raiders are strapped on cash, but I'm sure the front office could work things out if they wanted.
However, we must move on. Most fans think the solution is to simply have Stefen Wisniewski move to center. I would have to agree that this is the best option, but then that leaves a hole at left guard. So, with that, I went off and did an excessive amount of research and whittled it down to a few players.
The first guy I'd like to inform you all about is Kevin Zeitler of Wisconsin. I instantly fell in love with him, but then I thought, there is no way this guy makes it to the Raiders' first compensatory pick.
But I then I found a new hope. Ohio State's center, Mike Brewster, impressed me the most out of my other choices. He reminded me of Wisniewski so much it was incredible. Both played center, but can also play guard fairly well. Both are technicians in what they do. Wisniewski is the better of the two, but that comes with the pro journey and experience.
Brewster is an all-around player. When he blocks, he gets both hands on the defender and drives. He isn't the type to flatten guys on a daily basis, but he gets the job done and opens up lanes for the runner. He also does a good job getting to the next level and blocking linebackers.
In the passing game, Brewster has good awareness. He does not get beat very often and does a great job of keeping his man in front of him. He does not get pushed back by defenders, which I know Raider fans will just love considering how much they went after Satele for not holding his ground.
Brewster also had a solid combine. He stands at 6'4" and weighs 312 lbs, which is pretty average for an interior lineman. He ran a 5.35 40-yard dash and did 29 reps of 225 lbs. Some analysts weren't very impressed with him in the on-field drills (via Walterfootball.com), but watching his game film, he was very sound. He's not overly strong and would be a good fit in the zone-blocking system rather than the power blocking. Brewster is just a perfect match!
Brewster played a lot of center at Ohio State, but I see him playing guard if he is to be drafted by a team like the Raiders. Stefen Wisniewski is a natural leader of the line, and overall, is a better center. He played exceptionally well when Satele was out with injury. While it may be nice to have Wisniewski playing next to Veldheer, reminding us of the days of Shell and Upshaw, we need the guy to be in the middle and lead the offensive line.
As I've already stated, Brewster is like a clone of Brewster. He can provide the same skills that Wisinewski provided this year as a rookie. Projected to go in the third round, the Raiders have a good chance of getting Brewster.