Raiders Should Not Outhink Themselves Away From Russell

Sitting in the cat bird seat at number one is not always a good thing in the NFL Draft. It usually means you are one of, if not, the worst team in football, and this year that distinction goes to the Oakland Raiders, who are in the process of trying to nail down what top guy they want to take with the number one pick. The choices seem pretty simple – you either take the franchise QB in LSU’s JaMarcus Russell, who everyone seems to think they take, QB – Brady Quinn from Notre Dame, or Georgia Tech WR Calvin Johnson, who many think is the overall best player in the draft.

Watching Aaron Brooks and comedy of QB errors from others a season ago for Oakland, the obvious choice in this spot is Russell, who may not play right away, but could be like Vince Young and be in the starting lineup by week 6 or 7. Former Raiders coach Tom Flores stated the other day on a Cleveland talk show that he felt that Russell would be the choice at one for Oakland. The funny thing now is a report says that new Raiders coach Lane Kiffin and offensive coordinator Greg Knapp want Notre Dame QB Brady Quinn.

The thought of the Raiders passing on Russell, a player that clearly would infuse some excitement in the team and fan base, and taking Quinn, a player that could play right away, but is a little more of a traditional QB, is a bit far fetched. Oakland has had eyes on Russell from the word go, and passing on him for Quinn or Johnson for that matter would be a big mistake. Al Davis, Raiders owner, is the end all of end all’s when it comes to making decisions for his team, and if he wants Russell, which word is he does, the team will take Russell.

Sometimes teams talk themselves into taking a player, only to then rethink their decisions and go in another direction and then make a big mistake. That would be the case here if the Raiders decided to forgo Russell and take a shot on Quinn or Johnson. Both those players may be very good NFL Players one day, but Russell is that special type of player that could be a big impact player on a team that sorely needs it. Oakland needs to do the right thing – take Russell and don’t second guess what should be a rather obvious decision.


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