The (then Oakland) Raiders 2014 season ended in an even more lackluster fashion than the year before. After a 3-13 record and another coaching staff taking over in 2015, the question became how they could best help their young quarterback Derek Carr.
The answer came with the 2015 fourth overall draft pick, when the Raiders selected Alabama wide receiver Amari Cooper, but what if they hadn’t?
The Raiders boasted a bottom defense in 2014, coming in dead last in the league according to Pro Football Reference. So, if they had decided to use their first-round selection on a defensive player, that wouldn’t have been a bad thing, right?
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Enter Marcus Peters
Peters was chosen by division rival Kansas City with the 18th overall selection. What if he had been chosen by the Raiders at four instead? The team wouldn’t have had to face him twice a year and those (count ’em) eight interceptions Peters racked up in year one alone would have been an assist to the Silver and Black.
The Raiders offense didn’t fare well even with Cooper in 2015. The inconsistent wide receiver didn’t rack up that many touchdowns as it is, scoring six times and boasting a lackluster catch rate of 55.4%. That certainly could have been improved upon by a defensive playmaker who’s since been shuffled around by two other teams. Peters would have been a fit in Oakland, not only as a hometown favorite, but as a defensive stalwart who could have potentially taken up the mantle left by the retirement of Charles Woodson. Just for a moment, imagine a rookie the caliber of Peters sitting next to one of the greatest defensive backs of all time.
There’s no question Peters would thrive in almost any environment. He’s a great player when it comes to ball-hawking prowess. The question that remains is if the Raiders would be able to offer loyalty, something that Kansas City didn’t.
Looking at the coaching staff, it’s likely he would have made it to the Gruden era, and if he played throughout his tenure as he’s played in real-time, the coach would gladly make the man a long-term member of the Silver and Black.
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