Oakland Raiders: An Early Look at the 2010 Draft

With this season already in the record books for the Oakland Raiders, it’s never too early to look to next year.

Next year starts with the evaluation of those college football players who will be selected in the upcoming draft, and whilst the Raiders are quite well stocked at some positions, in others they are in desperate need of some new blood.

Oakland has the No. 8 pick this year, and the chance to pick up a real difference maker.  But they have to address the same old problems that have dogged this team over the last seven years. That is, a poor run defense and a shaky offensive line.

Here are my candidates that I believe should be considered. There will be a lot of movement up and down draft boards between now and April, and this is just an early assessment.


The Raiders are in dire need of a right tackle at the very least. Mario Henderson has been hot and cold on the left side, but Cornell Green has been a liability and simply has to be replaced if this offense is going to make progress.

Don’t kid yourself, we could select Russell Okung of Oklahoma State, but he will be gone by the time the Raiders are on the clock.

Brian Baluga from Iowa declared for the draft today though, and would be a great fit. 

The Hawkeyes already use a zone blocking scheme, which would make the transition to the NFL and Cable’s offense much easier. Baluga is a dominating run blocker and also a good pass protector.  At 6’6” and 315 lbs, with considerable athletic ability, he is a prototype NFL tackle who could play either side.

Anthony Davis of Rutgers may have as much upside as any tackle in the draft. Again, he has prototype size, and certainly has the speed and agility to fit in at Oakland. He has really impressed as the season continued, and looks like a top 15 pick. He has no real weaknesses, and projects to be an excellent NFL tackle.


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