Raiders News: Tom Telesco, Antonio Pierce, and more.

3 Possible First Round Scenarios For Raiders GM Tom Telesco 1.0

To say that this year’s NFL draft is pivotal for the Las Vegas Raiders is an annual occurrence now. Be that as it may, with Tom Telesco coming into a post-Dave Ziegler organization, 2024 is indeed crucial. Thankfully, the former Los Angeles Chargers boss has a solid track record in the first round, which leads us to look at some possible first-round selections.

It all starts in the trenches for Telesco; why not go that route?

Scenario No. 1: Drafting a franchise tackle to protect your quarterback…

Assuming that the Raiders don’t move up, staying put with the 13th pick isn’t exactly a “splash.” However, a franchise player can still be acquired, or at worst, an everyday starter. If you’re Telesco and you’re playing it safe, go with a player with a lot of upside but minimal risk. Alabama’s J.C. Latham or Penn State’s Olumuyiwa Fashanu come to mind.

It’s entirely plausible that the offensive line will undergo significant changes this offseason. If this is indeed true, drafting a future stalwart to stand opposite Kolton Miller would ensure long-term success, whether it’s to protect No. 4 or establish the mauler identity that head coach Antonio Pierce is clamoring for.

Scenario No. 2: You get Maxx Crosby some help…

Sticking with the idea of “playing it safe,” why not build on the team’s strength from last season? Of course, we’re referring to Patrick Graham’s defense. Going all in and getting Maxx Crosby some much-needed help to put the defense over the top might be a smart play.

Luckily for Telesco, the Raiders could pick up UCLA’s Laiatu Latu or Texas’ Byron Murphy II. The defensive line has the foundation for something special, with an emerging star in Malcolm Koonce and the potential of Tyree Wilson. You add Latu, for example, and the Raiders could feasibly have one of the most feared pass-rushing attacks in not just the AFC West but the entire league.

Scenario No. 3: Do you “reach” for a quarterback if you’re the Raiders?

The quarterback conversation dominates headlines for the Raiders, and rightfully so. The position’s future is on everyone’s mind, and no one knows what’s going to happen. By all intents and purposes, it appears that the organization supports last year’s rookie, Aidan O’Connell, but does that mean they’re committing to him as their permanent starter?

Having to stay at No. 13 means that players such as Drake Maye, Caleb Williams, and Jayden Daniels will be out of reach. Although NFL teams surely have a better understanding than us, there is a noticeable drop-off after those three. So, if that ends up becoming a reality, Michael Penix Jr. could be in play, which isn’t terrible by any stretch.

Unlike the top prospects, the display that Penix puts on during the combine could very well mean the difference between staying a top-15 pick or possibly falling out of the first round. Either way, we all know Telesco will do his homework. If you’re one of many Raiders fans who are pulling for Penix to don the Silver and Black, you have to hope he clears his medical and shows he’s worthy of first-round hype.

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