Bruce Campbell: A Case for This OT as a Match with the Oakland Raiders

This year, after the combine was over and mock drafts began to show Bruce Campbell going to the Raiders, the fanbase gave out a collective groan: "Not another combine standout!"

Even worse, he comes from the same school as the Raiders' last first round draft pick, who happened to be a combine standout and whom many are already proclaiming a bust.

But showing outstanding measurables and athletic ability is no reason to scoff at a potential draft pick. If anything it shows a will to better himself, along with great work ethic, and, most obviously, superior physical ability.

Darius Hayward-Bey and Campbell aren't the first combine standouts from Maryland. They are merely two names in a long list of players from Maryland who increased their draft stock with impressive combine numbers. It must be something in the water.

Two notable players, Shaune Merriman and Vernon Davis, were also from Maryland. Without elite combine numbers, neither would even have been considered as a first round draft pick.

Other Maryland alumni, aside from Hayward-Bey, Davis, Merriman, and Campbell include: Jon Condo, Eric Barton, Jared Gaither, Kris Jenkins, D'qwell Johnson, Dominique Foxworth, and E.J. Henderson, just to name a few.

All of these players increased their draft stock with impressive combine numbers and most are a big part of their respective teams.

No one should be criticizing Campbell for his combine; he should be criticized for flaws in his game.

A common misconception is that Campbell is not worthy of a first round pick. I've heard people ask, "Why would the Raiders draft a player in the first round who shouldn't go until the fourth?"

Well, first of all, they're the Raiders and that's what they do. Look at last year: Heyward-Bey was a reach. Michael Mitchell, by some accounts, wasn't even supposed to be drafted, Matt Shaughnessy was...

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