The NFL offseason has already started for teams that didn’t make the playoffs and some players are already on the move. Obi Melifonwu was one of the worst second-round picks in recent memory. Despite that fact, the former Raiders defensive back will be getting another chance in the NFL.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Melifonwu will be joining the San Francisco 49ers.
The massive defensive back has only played in seven games throughout his career and has never recorded an interception. Melifonwu is only 26-years-old so there’s still a chance he can turn his career around. He spent a couple of years with the New England Patriots so maybe he picked up a thing or two from their elite defensive system.
ALL the latest Raiders news straight to your inbox! Subscribe to the Heavy on Raiders newsletter here!
Raiders Have Been Terrible in the 2nd Round of Drafts
Based on the Raiders’ recent draft history, they’d be better off skipping the second round altogether. One of the team’s last five second-round picks is still with the team. Mario Edwards, Jihad Ward, Melifonwu and P.J. Hall all failed to make an impact with the team.
2019 second-round pick Trayvon Mullen has shown flashes of potential but hasn’t yet proven he can be the consistent starting cornerback they need him to be. Current general manager Mike Mayock wasn’t around when the failed second-round picks were selected so there’s still hope the Raiders can figure it out. With picks that early in the draft, the team should be finding starters. The fact that they keep picking busts is a serious problem that Mayock needs to fix immediately.
Can Raiders Fix Their Secondary?
For years, the Raiders have been trying to fix their secondary. They’ve used a lot of draft capital trying to upgrade their pass defense and have continuously failed. The team has drafted a defensive back in the first round in five of the last eight drafts. Despite that, the defense is still among the worst in the NFL at defending against the pass.
The future could be bright with Damon Arnette, Mullen and Johnathan Abram but they’ve got a lot of kinks to work out. The three were wildly inconsistent in 2020. The Raiders are set to make a change at defensive coordinator and it will be very important that whoever they hire is able to get the best out of the young defensive backs.
The Raiders do have talent and the three young guys seem eager to learn. The lack of pass rush definitely doesn’t do the secondary any favors but it’s not the fault of the defensive line that wide receivers and tight ends frequently get wide open. The Raiders are really close to fielding a playoff team but they need to fix their defense. If the secondary at least starts to play at a mediocre level, the team will have a better shot at winning more games. The decision on which defensive coordinator to hire is extremely important this offseason.