Clive Walford to the Oakland Raiders: Full Draft-Pick Breakdown

Move over Mychal Rivera, Clive Walford is here to take your job as the Oakland Raiders starting end in 2015.

The Raiders’ front office couldn’t wait for the outcome of Jermaine Gresham’s recovery process. McKenzie and co. drafted high on a TE with the No. 68 overall pick. The TE position isn’t a high-priority role in the league, but the Raiders need the extra protection across the offensive line.

Rivera was the team’s third-best receiver but a disaster in run-blocking schemes, registering the worst rating among starting TEs, per Pro Football Focus, at minus -17.3.

Walford steps in as a better inline blocker than Rivera with the ability to match his receiving production. He isn’t the best of both worlds but he offers a better balance as a combination TE.’s Lance Zierlein compares Walford to Colts TE Dwayne Allen, who is an exceptional red-zone threat for third-year QB Andrew Luck. It’s too early to compare Carr and Walford to Luck and Allen but Carr can utilize the Miami TE’s 6’4”, 251-pound stature to his advantage in the red-zone.

In a power-run scheme, Walford could become the driving force to lead the way for running backs Trent Richardson and Latavius Murray, per Zierlein:

Becoming a very reliable blocker. Is tough enough and physical enough to be a play-side blocking tight end on zone runs. Bends and explodes from hips into his targets and sustains with a good base. Will drive smaller linebackers off the line of scrimmage in run game. Has lined up in-line, slot and as an H-back. 

The top six RBs in the league outgained the Raiders in 2014. Oakland accumulated 1,240 yards and was dead-last in the league running the football. The Raiders’ RB rotation wasn’t the most skilled but the inline protection was atrocious.

Adding Richardson and now Walford...

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