The 2020 NFL Draft is right around the corner and the Las Vegas Raiders are faced with a pivotal decision with the No. 12 pick in the first round. Similar to most teams, the Raiders could decide to go in a variety of directions when they are on the clock.
Of course, Las Vegas has Derek Carr as their quarterback, as he enters his seventh season with the organization. Even though he’s the current starter, could the Raiders choose to add one of the incoming quarterback prospects? As a matter of fact, the Raiders are meeting with Justin Herbert before the draft next month.
While drafting a quarterback is a possibility, Las Vegas has other holes on the roster that need to be filled. On the defensive side of the ball, the Raiders could use some aid in the secondary.
Jon Gruden, an offensive-minded coach who is an aggressive play-caller, loves to have a handful of offensive weapons at his disposal. With the Antonio Brown trade backfiring last offseason, the Raiders could select a wide receiver in this year’s draft.
The depth of this year’s class of wide receivers is well-documented and there’s one that makes a ton of sense for Las Vegas early in the first round. With that in mind, here is a prediction on who the Raiders will take with the No. 12 pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.
Henry Ruggs (WR, Alabama)
There are a few wide receivers that have been considered the so-called ‘surefire’ options in the first round. The three wide receivers featured in that shortlist of receivers are Jerry Jeudy, CeeDee Lamb, and Henry Ruggs. Of those names listed, Ruggs is a receiver that perfectly resembles what the Raiders want in a receiver.
In his three seasons at Alabama, Ruggs accumulated 98 receptions, 1,716 yards, and 24 touchdowns. Just looking at his 17.5 yards per reception, media and fans alike have labeled Ruggs as strictly a vertical threat in a passing attack. The Raiders have a history there: They won Super Bowls in the 1970s and 1980s with a vertical passing attack.
However, when you watch Ruggs’ tape at Alabama, he proves that he is much more than that. While he’s able to use his speed to create big plays, he doesn’t get nearly enough credit as a route runner.
Without a doubt, Gruden and the Raiders would be able to use Ruggs’ speed to his advantage, giving him opportunities to stretch the field. Along with that, he would allow Ruggs to do some damage on short and intermediate routes.
As it currently stands, the Raiders boast a receiving corps that features the likes of Tyrell Williams, Hunter Renfrow, and Zay Jones. Provided that, there’s no doubt that Las Vegas would benefit from adding a wide receiver in the draft. Furthermore, Ruggs would be an ideal fit for Gruden’s offense, giving Carr a better chance to succeed in 2020.