Who should the Oakland Raiders stay away from in the 2017 NFL Draft? These five prospects should not be selected in the upcoming Raiders Draft.
— Sporting News (@sportingnews) April 22, 2017
Joe Mixon checks off all the boxes that the Raiders would want in a running back from the 2017 NFL Draft. He compiled 1,274 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns last season. Mixon added to that status by testing well at his Pro Day. Moreover, Oakland has a glaring need running back since Latavius Murray bounced via free agency.
Nonetheless, the Raiders should pass on Mixon in this draft. He has some domestic violence incidents in his background. Oakland has maintained a zero tolerance policy against those incidents. Granted, Mixon has owned up to his mistakes and the Raiders expressed favorable opinions about him. However, there are too many good backs in this draft class. The Raiders can find players like D’Onta Foreman, James Conner and others in later rounds.
— SEC Country Alabama (@SECCountryBama) April 20, 2017
Reuben Foster also has some issues off the field. There was an incident at the combine which resulted in Foster getting dismissed from the event. He has some questionable injury history with his shoulders. Then you factor in his failed drug test. The Raiders should pass on Foster.
Foster would fill a need for the Raiders at middle linebacker. He is the highly instinctive and productive linebacker that Oakland needs. The Alabama product also played in multiple big games and he projects as a fit in multiple defenses. Foster is also undersized for the position. Plus, he might not be available when the Raiders pick. Either way, Oakland should pass on Foster.
— Zesty Raiders News (@zesty_raiders) April 24, 2017
A few weeks ago, Caleb Brantley seemed like the perfect defensive tackle fit for the Raiders. He has scheme versatility at Florida, which means he could play three or five technique rusher for Oakland. Brantley tested okay and he was productive.
Regardless, he caught a battery charge after an incident with a woman earlier this month. Again, the Raiders have a zero tolerance policy for domestic violence. Moreover, Brantley has a questionable motor. Ultimately, the Raiders should pass on him.
Eliminating players for the Raiders draft is not as easy as picking out the players with character concerns. Tre’Davious White was a highly productive corner as a four-year starter at LSU. He also put up good numbers at the NFL Combine.
Nonetheless, White projects as a man corner. There are questions about his tackling and size. This makes him a less than ideal fit for the Raiders. Not to mention, this is an extremely deep class for corners. The Raiders can find big corners that fit their scheme. Prospects like Kevin King, Gareon Conley, and Quincy Wilson might be better corners for Oakland.
Again, Malik McDowell is a great athlete. McDowell was also productive which makes him worthy of a first-round pick.
On the other hand, McDowell has questions about his consistency. He has the length and speed to be a productive rusher on the edge or in the interior. Further, McDowell feels Oakland’s need for depth on the interior defensive line. Still, he is very similar to the two defensive linemen that the Raiders selecting in the past two NFL Drafts. Mario Edwards Jr. and Jihad Ward are both long athletic defensive lineman who need polish in their technique. Oakland is still developing them so adding McDowell does not make a lot of sense.
Finally, the Raiders will have a lot of options to consider in the upcoming draft. They should start by eliminating some players due to off-field issues and poor scheme fits. Joe Mixon, Reuben Foster, Caleb Brantley, Tre’Davious White and Malik McDowell do not belong in the Raiders draft.
[Featured Image by Gregory Paya/AP Images]