These Bold Offseason Moves Could Jolt Raiders’ 2019 Odds
There is no team primed to make a run at getting better this offseason in the NFL than the Oakland Raiders.
In their final season before heading to the glitz and glam of Las Vegas, the Raiders need a major makeover. After a disastrous first-year under $100 million man, Jon Gruden, the Raiders need a spark. They are well equipped to do just that.
Oakland has three first-round picks thanks to their questionable trades of defensive end Khalil Mack (Chicago) and wide receiver Amari Cooper (Dallas) last season. Those controversial trades prompted an unexpected rebuild in Oakland.
While the deals were unpopular, Oakland does get a chance to turn those draft picks into both immediate and future success.
Can a draft chance a team immediately? Look at the Indianapolis Colts. They drafted guard Quenton Nelson and linebacker Darius Leonard in the first two rounds, respectively. Remarkably, they both were named All-Pro and sparked an unexpected playoff run.
The Raiders will try to emulate what the Colts did in the draft. But Oakland also has the means to get better in free agency. They are projected to have about $70 million in salary-cap room. So, with Oakland’s surplus of draft picks and cap room, it does have a chance to get better.
Here are five offseason suggestions that they can make for fast improvement. NFL betting fans who see the writing on the wall for these moves should look to cash in on win totals before the line shifts post-move.
5 Major Moves the Raiders Can make
Trade for a Top Receiver
By top, we mean either Antonio Brown or Odell Beckham Jr. Brown is definitely on the trade market, and Beckham is rumored to be. The Raiders may be able to give the Steelers and Giants than any other team because of their surplus of picks.
Oakland also has the cap room to absorb either Brown’s or Beckham’s contract. The Raiders need a complete overhaul at receiver. Jordy Nelson is their best receiver and he will be 34 in May. Both Gruden and new Oakland general manager Mike Mayock have said they need to help Derek Carr.
There’s no better way than to add a star receiver.
Sign Le’Veon Bell
Bell is 27 and he is rested after taking the season off in a contract dispute with Pittsburgh. Bell is a perfect Gruden running back. He is effective as both a rusher and as a receiver. He is an upper-level player and Gruden craves this type of players.
Again, Oakland has the means to make it happen. Who would who make this team better, Bell or Marshawn Lynch at age 33?
Get the Best Pass-Rusher on the Market
There are a lot of potential free agents who get after the quarterback. But most of them will be given the franchise tag. The likely best pass-rusher not to get tagged is New England’s Trey Flowers. He is not a star, but he will be paid like one. Yet, he is solid.
Oakland desperately needs pass-rush help. Oakland had the fewest sacks in the NFL in 2018. The Raiders need a replacement for Mack.
Hope for a Top-3 Defensive Draft Pick
The consensus at the moment is the best defensive players in the draft are Ohio State’s Nick Bosa, Alabama defensive tackle Quinnen Williams and Kentucky pass-rusher Josh Allen. Any of these three players would help Oakland greatly.
However, there is a chance Bosa, Williams and Allen will be the first three picks, though those odds shrank amid reports that the Cardinals may take Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray with the top overall pick.
If that happens, Bosa, Williams or Allen will fall to the Raiders.
Trade Back Up to the Top 10
This draft isn’t expected to be overly deep. The Raiders can’t risk losing value for the Mack and Cooper trades. Thus, they need to package No. 24 and No. 27 and try to get back into the top 10. The Raiders need impact players.
If they can get top-level talent at No. 4 and No. 8-10, they need to try to do it.
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