Oakland Raiders: Free Agents Al Davis Should Consider

Creating depth at positions of need.

The eighth pick in the draft is high enough that it will produce a quality player. However, it is far enough out of the top five that it may not yield a player at a position of need that is worthy of a top 10 pick.

The consensus among fans and experts seems to suggest that the Raiders most urgent needs are offensive tackle, defensive tackle, middle linebacker, and cornerback. There are some good players at these positions that will be available when Oakland gets their turn at the podium, but most of them won't be worthy of a top 10 pick.

So what to do?

Why not sign a few free agents that will provide the depth needed with players that are already experienced? Doing this will free Al Davis up to take the best player available on draft day, regardless of what position they play.

Here are my thoughts on the free agents that could fill a role and can step in and play if the rookies aren't quite ready to contribute:

OT: Mark Tauscher

Mark is a 10-year veteran who has had some success after being drafted in the seventh round of the 2001 draft. He has started at right tackle most of his career, but is versatile enough to play guard if needed. He has had some injury issues recently, but should be healed and ready to go by training camp.

Mark could also provide leadership for a rookie should Al Davis do what everyone thinks he will and draft Bruce Campbell with the eighth overall pick. I'm fairly sure that the Raiders can get Tauscher with a team-friendly salary, so why not give him a shot?

DT: Tank Johnson

Drafted in the second round of the 2004 draft, Tank has the talent to start. The only question is whether or not he will get out of his own way.

When have "off-the-field" issues like Johnson's stopped Al Davis from signing a guy, or when has it stopped Raider fans from embracing a guy? It hasn't. Not to...

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