Why Geno Smith Would Be Latest 1st-Round Flop for Oakland Raiders

The Oakland Raiders haven't had a lot of success with first-round picks in recent years, and if recent reports are to be believed, a franchise that badly needs to hit with their high picks as they try to rebuild is preparing to shoot themselves in the foot once again.

Chris Mortensen of ESPN reported (via Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio) on Wednesday that there are rumors that the Raiders are interested in selecting West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith with the third overall pick in April's NFL draft.

That pick would follow a rather depressing precedent that the Raiders have set with their first-round picks of late.

That is, reaching only to regret it later.

Of the Raiders last five first-round picks, only two (Darren McFadden in 2008 and Michael Huff in 2006) can be considered even marginally good. Even then, McFadden has been plagued by injuries and Huff hasn't played up to his draft spot.

Wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey (2009) has shown some flashes, but hasn't come close to justifying a top-10 pick. Linebacker Rolando McClain (2010) and quarterback JaMarcus Russell (2007) were nothing short of absolute busts.

Mind you, this isn't necessarily a knock on Smith the player.

The 6'3" 220-pound senior had a very productive 2012 season in Morgantown, completing over 70 percent of his passes, throwing for nearly 4,200 yards and tossing 42 touchdown passes against only six interceptions.

Smith was also impressive at the 2013 NFL Scouting Combine. As Tony Pauline recently reported for USA Today, Smith threw the ball well in Indianapolis, and his 4.59-second 40-yard dash time was tops among signal-callers.

However, as pointed out by Don Banks of Sports Illustrated before the combine, none of this year's quarterback crop is wowing scouts like Robert Griffin or Andrew Luck did a year ago.

[Mike] Mayock of the NFL Network doesn't have a ...

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