Once again the Las Vegas Raiders should be in the market for a No. 1 wide receiver this offseason. That’s been the case for years and it’ll be the case once again. The team could look to free agency and make a big splash by signing a player like Davante Adams. However, big names like that aren’t always easy to acquire.
If the Raiders strike out in free agency, they will have to turn their sights towards the NFL Draft. The team will likely focus on finding a consistent deep threat. 2020 first-round pick Henry Ruggs was supposed to be that player for the team, but was released earlier in the season due to his involvement in a fatal car crash.
There will be some strong options to replace Ruggs in the draft. Kristopher Knox of Bleacher Report believes that Garrett Wilson out of Ohio State should be the Raiders’ top target in the 2022 NFL Draft:
While Ohio State’s Garrett Wilson is not a burner like Ruggs, he is more than capable of making big downfield plays. He’s a precise route-runner who will create separation both in space and on the perimeter.
A physical 6’0″, 192-pound pass-catcher, Wilson isn’t afraid to fight for the ball, either. While he isn’t likely to wow with his speed at the scouting combine, he has the tools to complement Darren Waller and Hunter Renfrow as one of Derek Carr’s go-to targets.
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Wilson Could Be Top-10 Pick
If the season ended now, the Raiders would have the 15th or 16th pick in the draft. That could be too low to land Wilson. A recent mock draft from CBS Sports has the Ohio State star going ninth overall to the Carolina Panthers. Another mock draft from Pro Football Network has Wilson going 10th to the New Orleans Saints.
The Raiders could make their way into the top-10 if they continue their losing ways. The team is 6-6 right now but has lost four of the last five. Losing more games would get them closer to a top-10 draft pick, which increases their chances of landing Wilson. There’s still a long process that needs to play out so perhaps the wide receiver will fall. If not, there will be other strong options available to the team.
Other WR for Raiders to Keep an Eye On
The Raiders will likely be linked to speedy wide receivers like Wilson heading into the draft, but they shouldn’t rule out any top wide receiver prospects. Any player who can get open and make tough catches would help the team. Alabama wide receivers are all over the NFL right now and the best one likely headed to the pros in 2022 is Jameson Williams.
He accumulated 1,445 yards this season on only 68 catches for an average of 21.3 yards a catch. That’s exactly the big-play threat the Raiders would love to have. He didn’t breakout until this season which could lower his draft stock. That would give Las Vegas the chance to buy low on a player with All-Pro potential.