Full 7-round Raiders 2023 mock draft: NFL Free Agency edition
The first day of free agency has come and gone with the Raiders making a few big moves. They’ve signed QB Jimmy Garoppolo and have added defensive backs Marcus Epps and Brandon Facyson.
So how does that change what the Raiders might do in Round 1? Here is a full 7-round mock draft after Day 1 of free agency.
Round 1: CB Christian Gonzalez, Oregon
Oct 8, 2022; Tucson, Arizona, USA; Oregon Ducks defensive back Christian Gonzalez (0) against the Arizona Wildcats at Arizona Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Assuming the top four quarterbacks are gone in the first five selections, the Raiders pivot to the best cornerback in the class. Gonzalez has the size and athleticism to be a superstar in the NFL and would pair nicely with Nate Hobbs.
Gonzalez ran a blazing 4.38 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine and is one of the most athletic defenders in the class. He has superstar written all over him.
Round 2: OG Steve Avila, TCU
Oct 23, 2021; Fort Worth, Texas, USA; TCU Horned Frogs center Steve Avila (79) pauses over the ball before a snap during the second quarter against the West Virginia Mountaineers at Amon G. Carter Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports
Avila has started at four different spots during his college career, but his best play has come at guard and center. He gives the Raiders another versatile offensive lineman who has the power and size to move defenders off the ball.
Avila did not allow a single sack during the 2022 season and was fantastic in the College Football Championship against Jalen Carter. He would instantly improve the offensive line for the Raiders, no matter where he lined up.
Round 3: QB Hendon Hooker, Tennessee
Tennessee quarterback Hendon Hooker (5) throws the ball during a game between Tennessee and Missouri in Neyland Stadium, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.
The Raiders are going to take a quarterback in this class and why not gamble on someone like Hooker? If it weren’t for a torn ACL, Hooker would have had a chance to be a first-round pick. Instead, he falls to the third round and would be a fantastic fit behind Jimmy Garoppolo.
It’s worth mentioning that Hooker finished second in EPA per play and was one of the highest-graded passers in the nation. There are a lot of tools worth developing despite picking him in Round 3.
Round 4: WR Michael Wilson, Stanford
Feb 2, 2023; Mobile, AL, USA; National wide receiver Michael Wilson of Stanford (4) practices with National defensive back Jakorian Bennett of Maryland (4) during the third day of Senior Bowl week at Hancock Whitney Stadium in Mobile. Mandatory Credit: Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports
Wilson is a big, physical receiver who has had some problems staying healthy. But he could replace Mack Hollins as the No. 4 receiver on the team and has a bunch of experience on special teams.
Round 5: LB Dorian Williams, Tulane
Jan 2, 2023; Arlington, Texas, USA; Tulane Green Wave linebacker Dorian Williams (2) holds up the McKnight trophy for outstanding defensive player after the Green Wave defeat the USC Trojans in the 2023 Cotton Bowl at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Williams is a speedy linebacker that would give the Raiders more athleticism on their defense.
Round 5: DT Moro Ojomo, Texas
West Virginia quarterback JT Daniels (18) is chased by Texas defensive lineman Moro Ojomo (98) during the game at Royal Memorial Stadium in Austin, Texas on Oct. 1, 2022.
Aem Texas Vs West Virginia 6
Ojomo is an undersized defensive tackle who knows how to get to the quarterback. In the fifth round, it’s worth gambling on his athletic traits.
Round 5: TE Will Mallory, Miami (FL)
Nov 26, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Hurricanes tight end Will Mallory (85) runs the ball around Pittsburgh Panthers defensive back Javon McIntyre (20) during the second half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
With the Raiders likely to lose Foster Moreau in free agency, Mallory could step right in and fill the No. 2 TE role.
Round 6: CB Rejzohn Wright, Oregon State
Nov 19, 2022; Tempe, Arizona, USA; Oregon State Beavers defensive back Rejzohn Wright (2) against the Arizona State Sun Devils at Sun Devil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Wright is a long, athletic cornerback with a lot of developmental traits.
Round 6: OT Nick Saldiveri, Old Dominion
Feb 2, 2023; Mobile, AL, USA; American defensive lineman Zacch Pickens of South Carolina (3) spars with American offensive lineman Nick Saldiveri of Old Dominion (59) practices during the third day of Senior Bowl week at Hancock Whitney Stadium in Mobile. Mandatory Credit: Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports
The Raiders need more depth at offensive tackle and Saldiveri gives them that with his experience and versatility.
Round 7: SS Kaevon Merriweather, Iowa
Iowa defensive back Kaevon Merriweather (26) lines up during a NCAA Big Ten Conference football game against Northwestern, Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022, at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City, Iowa.
221029 Northwestern Iowa Fb 061 Jpg
Merriweather is a hard-hitting safety who could immediately contribute on special teams.
Round 7: EDGE Nick Hampton, Appalachian State
Sep 10, 2022; College Station, Texas, USA; Texas A&M Aggies quarterback Haynes King (13) passes against the rush of Appalachian State Mountaineers linebacker Nick Hampton (9) in the second quarter at Kyle Field. Mandatory Credit: Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports
Hampton is a small-school EDGE rusher that could find a spot on the bottom of the roster as a DE5.