Alex Leatherwood named ‘high-floor’ pick by Raiders

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One of the biggest reasons why Mike Mayock and Jon Gruden are drawn to players from big schools (such as Alabama, Clemson and Ohio State) is that they play against the best competition on a weekly basis. They also aren’t afraid of big games and you can watch out they compete under pressure.

For that reason, players from those schools typically have higher floors than most first-round prospects. That’s why Alex Leatherwood was such an appealing player to the Raiders at No. 17 given their need at right tackle.

In a recent article by Maurice Moton of Bleacher Report, Leatherwood was named one of the highest floor picks of the class. Here is a snippet from Moton on the former Alabama offensive tackle and his fit with the Raiders:

“Alex Leatherwood has collegiate experience at left tackle and right guard, though he has the traits necessary to play right tackle in the Raiders’ zone-blocking scheme. The 6’5″, 312-pounder has the length (33⅞-inch arms) to line up on the outside with the athleticism to reach his spot and seal off defenders.

Although Denzelle Good projects as the starting right guard, Leatherwood can also play that position if his transition to right tackle doesn’t pan out. He’s a high-floor pick who should start Week 1 on the right side.”

With Leatherwood’s combination of size, athleticism, length and experience, it’s not hard at all to see why he was drafted at No. 17. While some draftniks believe he should have fallen a bit further, picking him in the top-20 makes a ton of sense for the Raiders.

Look for Leatherwood to be a Day 1 starter for the Raiders and play at an acceptable level as a rookie. His ceiling is much higher than that, but expect him to be a quality starter right away on the right side of the offensive line.

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