OneManBlitz emerged from The Black Hole and spoke these learned words to the masses:
With the fifth pick of the 2014 Battle Red Blog Mock Draft, the Oakland Raiders select Khalil Mack (LB--Buffalo).
Let's face it, the Raiders are renting at QB. Nobody expects a miracle out of Matt Schaub, and it remains to be seen if Antonio Smith will be a marauding pirate or perhaps the sort of PG-rated pirate you see at church fall festivals. They have their work cut out for them in the AFC West, which quickly became a very competitive division with the Chargers, Broncos, and Chiefs all playing at high levels in 2013.
This is where people think the Raiders would do well to draft one of the two offensive tackles to protect Schaub from the wrath of Raiders fans as they watch the ball go the other way for 6. Or, maybe the Raiders should have selected an Andre Johnson'ish wide receiver named Mike Evans to give old Schauby a chance with those floating rainbows he throws that AJ seemed to adjust to and gather in on occasion.
Neither of those options worked for me, however, and here's why: (1) I have Matt McGloin able and ready to take the wheel if Matt Schaub falters early and often, and I can add another quarterback in the draft as I see fit (translation: Blake Bortles is not NFL material); and, (2) Yes, I have a need at left tackle, but no, I don't like Greg Robinson nor Jake Matthews at #5 overall.
Instead, I want to address LT later in the draft, likely Round 2, focusing maybe on Alabama's Anthony Steen, who I think is a great Round 2 or Round 3 solution to transition from RT into my new LT. In other news, I first thought that Mike Evans would be a smart pick. But Andre Johnson is Andre Johnson, and I don't know if Mike Evans is that type of player yet. The last thing I wanted to do is draft another #RaiderzBigTallFastWR only to see him be a waste at #5 overall. The Raiders need to reverse their Round 1 curse, and they will do so with Khalil Mack.
In selecting Khalil Mack, the Raiders return to a more physical brand of football by adding a LB who can play outside, in the middle, and can even hang with TEs in coverage when asked. Yes, that means taking away Peyton Manning's new favorite toy, TE Julius Thomas, who needs to be covered by someone like Khalil Mack; Mack can legitimately provide that help for the Raiders defense. I think Khalil Mack is a tremendous value at #5 overall because of what he will mean to this team now and in the future.
I figured the best way to help the Raiders was to act like Matt Schaub was on borrowed time anyway, and at #5 overall I have to add PURE TALENT somewhere that I know the player is an immediate impact player. Khalil Mack is that guy, in my opinion. His measurables at the NFL Combine were the same as, and even better than, those of Jadeveon Clowney.
Mack can rush the edge and literally overpower OTs with a variety of moves. He can move within and navigate traffic at the LOS, devouring ball carriers, or slash through the seams and find the QB. His brute strength is paired with amazing agility, and his instincts for the ball make him an excellent LB for the Raiders. The Raiders fans will appreciate this pick, I think, because they need instinctive, pure physicality on defense. I liken this pick to when the Texans selected Brian Cushing. Using a Round 1 pick to select a dominant LB who rarely gets beat is a great way to strengthen your team. At #5 overall, I think Khalil Mack is just the right guy in just the right draft position to justify this selection for the Raiders.
Tough to argue with anyone drafting Khalil Mack anywhere, so this pick more than passes muster for me. Share your two cents in the Comments below.
With that, Three and Out and the Atlanta Falcons are on the clock. Or they would be, if he hadn't already submitted Atlanta's pick. Check back at 4 p.m. CDT to see who will become the newest Falcon.
1. Houston Texans--Sammy Watkins (WR--Clemson)
2. St. Louis Rams (from Washington)--Jadeveon Clowney (DE--South Carolina)
3. Jacksonville Jaguars--Johnny Manziel (QB--Texas A&M)
4. Cleveland Browns--Teddy Bridgewater (QB--Louisville)
5. Oakland Raiders--Khalil Mack (LB--Buffalo)
6. Atlanta Falcons--Three and Out
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers--theSpaceCityKid
8. Minnesota Vikings--bcaust
9. Buffalo Bills--NoSafetiesNeeded
10. Detroit Lions--UTBawse23
11. Tennessee Titans--BostonianToro
12. New York Giants--TooDarkMark
13. St. Louis Rams--grandmasteroz
14. Chicago Bears--JayTrain52
15. Denver Broncos (TRADED w/ Steelers) --Capt. Ron
16. Dallas Cowboys--TonyOverTroy
17. Baltimore Ravens--TexanSam
18. New York Jets--Sugel Mendoza
19. Miami Dolphins--bt20
20. Arizona Cardinals--Lukayyy
21. Green Bay Packers--gyeager
22. Philadelphia Eagles--gm.in.waiting
23. Kansas City Chiefs--MrCatPants
24. Cincinnati Bengals--hlc1221
25. San Diego Chargers--f22a4bandit
26. Cleveland Browns--FreedomRide
27. New Orleans Saints--H&Hguy
28. Carolina Panthers--Nashmeister
29. New England Patriots--37bp
30. San Francisco 49ers--TexansDC
31. Pittsburgh Steelers (TRADED w/ Broncos) --Steel Blue Crew
32. Seattle Seahawks--UprootedTexan
33. Houston Texans--bhsman