Raiders grab stud EDGE rusher in early 2022 NFL mock draft

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Marcus Mosher
·2 min read
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In the 2021 NFL draft, the Raiders filled two of the biggest holes at right tackle and free safety. Alex Leatherwood and Trevon Moehrig both project as Day 1 starters for the Raiders and the hope is that the rest of their draft class can find roles as rookies.

However, one spot they didn’t really address (outside of Malcolm Koonce in the third-round) is edge rusher. Despite the signing of Yannick Ngakoue this offseason, the Raiders could still be in the market for more pass-rush help.

That’s why it wouldn’t be surprising if they went in that direction in next year’s draft. In a way-too-early mock draft by The Athletic’s Dane Brugler, he has the team selecting USC defensive end Drake Jackson. Here is what Brugler had to say about the possible pick:

“When I was studying USC’s tape during the 2019 season, I thought I found a sleeper prospect when No. 99 kept popping on film. Turns out Jackson was only a true freshman, and he quickly announced himself to the world as a future top pick.”

As a freshman in 2019, Jackson totaled 11.5 tackles for a loss in 11 games. His production dipped some in 2020, recording only 5.5 tackles for a loss in six games. Still, he’s a super athlete who is still incredibly young and the 2021 season should put him in the conversation as a top-10 pick next year.

If the Raiders wind up picking inside the top-20 next year, Jackson could be a likely pick given his overall production and big-school pedigree. Keep an eye on him throughout the 2021 college football season.

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