Oakland Raiders Final Draft Report Card

I still believe that running back Darren McFadden will end up the top player in the 08 draft. Both Chaz Schilens and Arman Shields were drafted as receivers, but in reality are more likely members of the famed Raiders 4x100 sprint relay team. Tyvon Branch and Trevor Scott have a chance to develop.

Oakland Raiders Grade -F NO RD Name Pos School HT WT 40 Grade
7 1 Heyward-Bey, Darrius WR Maryland 6015v 210v 4.29v 1.161
47 2 Mitchell, Michael DS Ohio U 6005v 221v 4.51v 1.787
71 3 Shaughnessy, Matt DE Wisconsin 6051v 266v 4.92v 1.640
124 4 Murphy, Louis WR Florida 6023v 203v 4.37v 1.270
126 4 Norris, Slade LB Oregon St 6020v 232v 4.60v 1.800
199 6 Sulak, Stryker DE Missouri 6044v 251v 4.68v 1.623
202 6 Myers, Brandon TE Iowa 6033v 250v 4.78v 1.800

I sometimes wonder if Al Davis is trying to draft football player or put together a sprint relay team to challenge the Jamaican! Both receivers drafted by the Raiders in rounds one and four (Darrius Heyward-Bey and Louis Murphy) are big impressive looking individual with outstanding speed, but neither player is what I would consider a natural confident catcher. Look the position is called wide receiver and not wide runner and it is the most fundamental and important quality a receiver can have in his arsenal. I thought that Heyward-Bey made the effort to extend for the football, but he was not a natural catcher. He will double catch and jump cradle more often than not and I didn't think he worked back to the ball with confidence. Can and will make the tough catch, but will drop some very catchable balls. After the catch both got North-South quickly but neither was a nifty instinctive runner.. Once he got a step on a defender on a vertical route the game was over, but on a lot of underneath stuff (short and intermediate routes), he didn't look near as fast as his timed speed (faster than quick). Murphy has a what I would consider some very bad habit. All are very correctable, but nonetheless are going to take time to overcome. On his open releases will drop or jab step to start, and will look to the ground on many of his routes. At times I felt he flagged some of his under routes (hand signal). Can get in and out of a break with not a lot of wasted motion (good ability to drop his base and get around for the football). On his deep routes I didn't think he separated from easily from defenders (difference between track and playing speed). His two major shortcomings appear to be his ability to catch the low ball and to win in win in traffic. Tight end Brandon Myers can catch and is a smart football player, but he can't block a soul and was very tight in the hips. I thought Sulak looked like a baskerball player, but like Myers is very tight. It's been nearly forty years since the Raiders greatest deep receiving threat Warren Wells last wore the silver and black, but that hasn't stopped Al from continuing to search for his replacement. The rest of the draft left me and a lot of people around the league shaking our heads. It looks like the six year rebuilding program just got extended by a another season.

FRANCHISE PICK: N/A
QUICKEST TO START: Darrius Heyward-Bey
FASTEST TO PRO BOWL: N/A
BEST IN 3 YEARS: Matt Shaughnessy
OVERRATED: Louis Murphy
UNDERRATED: Matt Shaughnessy
PROJECT: Stryker Sulak
BEST COLLEGE F.A.: Jerome Boyd (OB)
TOP TALENT SCOUT: Mickey Marvin
HUH?: Michael Mitchell

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