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Raiders Mailbag: We're down to the wire on the 2021 NFL Draft

Matt Empting asks…

What are the chances of trading back?

I personally believe that the chances the Raiders trade up could be a lot higher than them trading back.

While the Silver and Black has a lot of talent to choose from at No. 17, it wouldn't be surprising to see them use the draft capital they acquired in offseason trades to make a splash in the first round. If the Raiders are sold on talent such as Micah Parsons, Rashawn Slater or Patrick Surtain II, there's a high chance they would have to draft up to get them.

While trading back definitely isn't ruled out, it just wouldn't make sense to me to trade back that far and risk losing out on a right tackle or defensive back they may be eyeing at their allotted pick currently.

Aaron Van den Eynde asks…

Why are all mock drafts pairing LBs for us? Don't get me wrong, would love to have a White or Bush type at the Silver and Black.. But don't we need help at DT or CB?

The key word in mock draft is the word "mock."

While many mock drafts are pairing the likes of Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah and Jamin Davis to the Raiders first-round pick, the Silver and Black may have more pressing needs at other positions. Is the only linebacker worth taking at No. 17 Micah Parsons if he slides in the draft? Could be. Otherwise, the Raiders can target other talented players at the position in later rounds.

To be more realistic in what the Raiders should chase at No. 17, a defensive back or a defensive tackle are both positions of need. While the Raiders are stacked at three-technique DLs with the signings of Solomon Thomas and Quinton Jefferson, another true nose tackle to stop the run would definitely be a plus. Alabama's Christian Barmore or Iowa's Daviyon Nixon would be a perfect fit at the role.

As for the secondary, selecting someone such as Trevon Moehrig, Caleb Farley or Jaycee Horn would be solid picks at No. 17 to put next to the young talent alongside the backfield the Silver and Black currently possess.

Mike Boyer asks…

Let's take the best available athlete that fits our needs.

I couldn't agree more.

The Raiders are in a great situation in this draft due to the fact that the holes they had at the beginning of the offseason have been mostly addressed throughout free agency. This gives them an opportunity to get the best player on their draft board who they know will make an immediate impact stepping onto the field.

While the Raiders definitely have some needs they must get after in the draft, they're in positions that have solid depth in this year's draft such as free safety and offensive tackles. The Raiders need to take the best player on the board that will be in Silver and Black making plays for years to come, regardless of the position.

With the 2022 NFL Draft taking place in Las Vegas from Thursday, April 28 to Saturday, April 30, take a look back at the top 10 draft picks in Raiders history.

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