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NFL Draft analyst says Raiders ‘left the driver in the bag’ in Round 1

The Oakland Raiders notably selected three players in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft. With the Raiders selecting former Clemson defensive lineman Clelin Ferrell, former Alabama running back Josh Jacobs and former Mississippi State defensive back Johnathan Abram, many believe that Oakland did a pretty good job — though it appears as though the Raiders played it safe.

“They left the driver in the bag. [Mike] Mayock and [Jon] Gruden just wanted to hit the fairway,” NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah recently said, via The Athletic.

With Gruden preparing for his second season as the team’s head coach — in his second go-round in Oakland, that is — Mayock is currently in his first season as the Raiders general manager.

“They went safe, yet still got good players,” John Middlekauff of The Athletic writes. “Now, before Raiders fans start calling me a hater, let me explain something. I think the Mayock-Gruden combo did a good job. Unlike last year, I felt they added a ton of good football players this time. But my issue in the first round was with the value of two of the picks.

“But Clemson defensive end Clelin Ferrell was not the fourth-best player in this draft. That was easily LSU linebacker Devin White or Houston defensive lineman Ed Oliver.”

After trading away both Chicago Bears pass rusher Khalil Mack and Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Amari Cooper this past season, the Raiders are now looking to rebuild in a hurry under the direction of both Gruden and Mayock.