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After winning just six games a year ago as one of the NFL's big disappointments Calvin Ridley Jersey Falcons , the Oakland Raiders had plenty of needs in their first draft since bringing Jon Gruden back for a second stint as coach.
They opted to bypass some of the most highly regarded defensive players to take UCLA tackle Kolton Miller after trading down five spots to No. 15, hoping to bolster the offensive line in front of quarterback Derek Carr.
"He's a big man that can move his feet," general manager Reggie McKenzie said. "He's played left tackle and right tackle. He's been an offensive lineman pretty much his whole life. He understands the game. He's an excellent athlete who has great potential. We feel really good about adding him to the Raiders roster."
After the San Francisco 49ers took the top-rated tackle in the draft, Mike McGlinchey, with the ninth overall pick, the Raiders opted to move down from 10 even with talented defensive players Minkah Fitzpatrick, Derwin James and Tremaine Edmunds on the board. They traded down five spots with Arizona, adding a third- and fifth-round pick in the deal.
Oakland still went with an offensive lineman at No. 15, taking Miller, with James and Edmunds still available.
The Raiders weren't done getting help for Carr on the first day of the draft http://www.bengalsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-malik-jefferson-jersey , trading the third-round pick they got from the Cardinals to Pittsburgh for talented but troubled receiver Martavis Bryant.
Bryant caught 17 touchdowns in 36 games for the Steelers, but was suspended twice for drug violations. He missed four games in 2015 and all of the 2016 season.
Bryant returned last spring but was quickly surpassed by JuJu Smith-Schuster on the depth chart. He asked for a trade in late September and was deactivated for a game after calling out Smith-Schuster in a post on social media.
The 6-foot-4 Bryant has the size and speed to give Carr a serious downfield threat and Oakland a better option at third receiver to go along with Amari Cooper and Jordy Nelson. Bryant averaged 15.3 yards per reception with the Steelers.
"He's what you're looking for as a receiver," McKenzie said. "He can play big, play fast and he makes plays. We think he can be a dominating receiver for Derek."
This is the Raiders' first draft since bringing back Gruden for a second stint in Oakland. Gruden replaced the fired Jack Del Rio after last season and was given a 10-year contract to become the head of the organization.
While McKenzie remained as general manager and was involved heavily in draft preparation, Gruden is the man who now has the final word on picks for Oakland. Offensive line coach Tom Cable was high on Miller.
Gruden has said the Raiders needed better play at right tackle to protect Carr, especially in a division that features elite pass rushers like Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram on the Chargers, Von Miller and first-round pick Bradley Chubb in Denver, and Justin Houston in Kansas City.
The Raiders signed Breno Giacomini to a one-year deal to play right tackle but Miller could take that spot while being groomed to move to the left side. Donald Penn turns 35 on Friday and is coming off a season-ending foot injury.
"I'm stoked," Miller said. "I'm ready to get going there and compete and learn from the older guys. There's a lot of experience surrounding me. I'm ready to embrace it."
Miller allowed two sacks and 16 total quarterback pressures in 579 pass blocking snaps last season, according to Pro Football Focus Cheap Joe Namath Jersey , ranking 17th in efficiency.
"When you're talking about pass protection and staying in front of your guy, that's what he does," McKenzie said. "He's got the length, he's got the great feet. You talk about getting to the second level and pulling. This guy has a lot of talent. We think in our scheme and coach Cabes working with him, he'll flourish."
The Raiders still have one pick in the second, third and fourth rounds, three in the fifth, four in the sixth and one in the seventh.
Oakland also waived defensive tackle Darius Latham.
Jacksonville’s success last season gave owner Shad Khan hope for the future and increased faith in the team’s leadership.
Khan gave two-year extensions to coach Doug Marrone, executive vice president of football operations Tom Coughlin and general manager Dave Caldwell on Friday. All three had two years remaining on their deals, which now will run through the 2021 season.
”The decision to extend the contracts of Tom Denzel Ward Jersey Browns , Dave and Doug isn’t so much a reward for last season, which no doubt was impressive, as it is to recognize their importance to our football team this coming season and for years to follow,” Khan said in a statement. ”We’re past celebrating the accomplishments of our division title and playoff run, and now it’s time to take the next step.
”We need the right leadership firmly in place to make that happen, and it’s good to know we’ll have that with Tom, Dave and Doug secure in their roles with the Jacksonville Jaguars.”
The Jaguars won the AFC South for the first time in franchise history, made the playoffs for the first time in a decade and advanced to the AFC title game for the first time since 2000.
Khan hired Coughlin and Marrone in January 2017. Coughlin returned to the franchise he helped build from a trailer in the early 1990s and gave him full control over all football matters. That meant fewer decisions for Caldwell.
But Khan credits Caldwell for drafting and assembling much of the roster that turn a laughingstock into a contender, earning the team’s first home playoff game since 2000.
Jacksonville won thanks mostly to one of the league’s best defenses. Caldwell drafted many of those defenders, including All-Pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey Cheap Derrick Nnadi Jersey , pass-rusher Yannick Ngakoue and linebackers Telvin Smith and Myles Jack. Coughlin, Caldwell and Marrone also landed the best free-agent class in franchise history by signing defensive end Calais Campbell, cornerback A.J. Bouye and safety Barry Church.
The defense nearly led the Jaguars to the Super Bowl for the first time in franchise history. They held a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter at New England before Tom Brady and the Patriots scored twice late and won 24-20.
”The success we had last season was due to the efforts of many people, but Doug and Dave certainly played key leadership roles in guiding our team,” Coughlin said in a statement. ”They set the tone and managed the process on a daily basis, and we look forward to building on that process throughout this offseason and the coming season.”