Raiders move up to take tight end

NCAA FOOTBALL: NOV 08 Penn State at Iowa

Oakland traded away next year’s sixth round pick and this year’s seventh round selection to move up 14 spots in the 2009 NFL draft and select Iowa tight end Brandon Myers with the 202nd pick.  The move gave Carolina both picks and the Raiders another tight end who will surely back up starter Zach Miller.

Myers, 6’4″ 250 lbs., is thought to be more of an inline blocking tight end than one who will be relied on for catching touchdowns.  He caught 34 passes for 441 yards and four touchdowns his senior year and received first-team All-Big 10 honors for his efforts.

Going into his senior year, Myers was listed on the depth chart as a backup, but due to injuries and his improvement, he was able to start for most of the year and play in every game.

Legitimate NFL build. Stout upper body. Good hand placement and upper body strength to assist in pass protection. Shows some balance and lateral quickness to mirror the defender. At least adequate initial quickness off the snap. Flexible enough to dip under the jam to gain a free release. Shows some burst out of his breaks and to gain separation. Not often given opportunities to catch passes in Iowa’s offense, but shows at least adequate hands for the reception. Can make the tough grab in traffic.

The trade and pick puts an end to an Oakland Raiders draft that has left many insiders and draft experts scratching their heads.  The Raiders went into the draft needing a wide receiver, defensive tackle, offensive tackle, and a safety.  What they selected was two wide receivers, three defensive ends, a safety, and a tight end.