Skip to main content
Raider Nation, Stand Up - View Schedule - Presented by Allegiant

Tyree Wilson hopes to bring 'relentless and disruptive' play to the Raiders

A couple of months ago at the NFL Combine, Tyree Wilson was asked about the possibility of teaming up with Maxx Crosby.

With a slight grin, the Texas Tech edge rusher recalled what he told the Raiders during his pre-draft interview: "If I get to join Maxx Crosby, it would be two great pass rushers on the field to help each other."

That possibility became a reality when Wilson was selected with their seventh pick Thursday night.

"I had a great 30 visit there, so I was curious to see what they were going to do," Wilson said on a conference call with local media. "I'm excited that they picked me."

The Henderson, Texas, native graced the draft stage with swagger. He opted to wear a tailored navy blue tuxedo, accented with teal and magenta flowers. His accessories were certainly on point as well, donning designer sunglasses reminiscent of rapper Kool Moe Dee and diamonds for days with a cross necklace and cuban link, his initials "TW" as a pendant.

"You only get this opportunity once, so I wanted to have a good suit that my family will remember and that I'll remember," said Wilson.

"I would say my biggest strength is being versatile, being able to play wherever they need me to play." Tyree Wilson

Saturday night in Kansas City he also made Texas Tech football history, becoming the highest selected defensive player in program history. The Raiders are getting an unit of an athlete in their first round pick, standing at 6-foot-6, 271 pounds, who led the Big 12 with 50 quarterback pressures in 2022.

In three seasons at Texas Tech, after transferring from Texas A&M, he racked up 109 total tackles, 29 tackles for loss and15.5 sacks with a Second Team AP All-American selection.

"I would say my biggest strength is being versatile, being able to play wherever they need me to play," he said. "And there's other things that I need work on like locking out all the time and playing with pad leverage and just being more technical sound. Coming from college and going to the NFL, that's the biggest thing that you have to work on."

"We knew even before we got to this point this was a place he wanted to play." Dave Ziegler

After the end of the first round, General Manager Dave Ziegler and Assistant General Manager Champ Kelly addressed the team's decision to select Wilson. According to Ziegler, while the players selected went as predicted in their draft board, they were excited and surprised to still see him available at No. 7.

"We knew even before we got to this point this was a place he wanted to play," said Ziegler. "This was an organization he wanted to play for. He made that clear to us before we even drafted him. A lot of excitement, this is a huge moment for all of these guys and for Tyree. ... The dream of being of an NFL player and being a Top 10 pick – you can hear the excitement in his voice."

"I think you saw him get up to the stage and pick the commissioner up in the air," the GM continued, referencing Wilson's eagerness to be drafted by the Raiders. "Just a lot of energy, a lot of juice, he's ready to get to work and he's ready to learn. He's ready to learn from the guys that are here, he's ready to earn his keep and be an accountable player."

Wilson was a player the Raiders got to know well during the draft process, having interviewed him at the Scouting Combine and hosted him for a Top 30 visit. The Raiders, like Wilson himself, believe versatility is the 22-year-old's strong suit.

"We thought that he was extremely versatile," said Kelly. "This is a guy that played all across the front. So you can line him up with Chan [Chandler Jones] and Maxx and this guy can still find a role to help us rush the quarterback. We've even seen him dropping [in coverage] in some clips so we're really excited about that too."

The former Big 12 standout finds himself in an advantageous situation joining two Pro Bowl caliber edge rushers in Crosby and Jones. Several scouts have compared Wilson to Jones, considering Wilson's height and 86-inch wingspan. The defensive lineman described himself as a fan of both.

"I've watched Maxx, I've been watching him for awhile and he's a great pass rusher," Wilson said. "Dominant and a disruptive player that's going to be relentless all over the field. That's who I try to patent my game after, be relentless and be disruptive."

With the 7th overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, the Las Vegas Raiders selected defensive end Tyree Wilson.

Related Content

Latest Content