Khalil Mack NFL Draft 2014: Grading Raiders’ 1st-Round Pick

Khalil Mack was selected fifth overall by the Oakland Raiders in the 2014 NFL draft. The former Buffalo Bull standout was regarded by most as the best outside linebacker in the draft, and Oakland thought he was too good to pass up. 

Mack was an unheralded recruit out of high school, but he shone for four years at Buffalo, where he used his size, strength and speed to become a force at linebacker for them. He proved capable of making a serious impact against big-time competition and set school records for sacks and tackles for loss in his time. 

The redshirt senior has all the skills to be an elite edge-rusher in the NFL, with fantastic size and strength. He's outstanding in pursuit and has a nose for the ball rushing the passer. The linebacker has great length, which allows him to wreak havoc in the passing game as well as in run defense. 

Mack is a versatile player, capable of lining up basically anywhere in the front seven, and he's capable of leading a defensive unit. If you need a pass-rusher who can impact the game from the second level, Mack is your man. 

However, the Buffalo standout has some risks. His pass coverage leaves much to be desired, and he can be a step slow off the snap, which could cost him in the pros. While he played the occasional game against elite competition, he was often matched up with subpar talent in the MAC, which could make his transition tougher.

Will Mack fulfill his potential, or will he disappoint at the next level? Watch as our draft experts discuss Mack's ceiling and what the linebacker brings to the pros.

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