Prior to the trade for Davante Adams, wide receiver was arguably the biggest need the Las Vegas Raiders had heading into the offseason. They added the best in the NFL so it was no longer a need. The team did look at some options heading into the draft but ended up ignoring the position with their picks.
The Raiders quickly turned their sights to undrafted free agency once the draft ended and added some interesting players. Perhaps the most interesting pickup is former Virginia Tech wide receiver Tre Turner. According to Chris Tomasson, the Minnesota Vikings were originally going to sign Turner before the Raiders came in and poached him by offering a much bigger guaranteed contract.
The Vikings will likely be disappointed but the Raiders clearly wanted him and made it happen. He sent a message to the team after the news dropped of his signing.
The 6-foot-2, 190-pound wide receiver earned the nickname “Big Play Tre” due to his penchant for making big plays.
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Scouting Report on Turner
In four seasons at Virginia Tech, Turner had 134 receptions for 2,292 yards and 14 touchdowns. Prior to college, he was an impressive basketball prospect before choosing football. That was likely the right call as he was named All-ACC Second Team member by PFF College in 2020. NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein was impressed with Turner’s ball skills but wasn’t a fan of how he tested:
Turner is a former high school hoops star whose basketball athleticism is manifested in his impressive ball skills. His long speed is very average, but his ability to body up, elevate and win at the high-point is a big concern for man-cover corners down the field. He has experience with a more developed route tree, but his poor testing at the NFL Scouting Combine raises questions about his ability to uncover as a pro. Turner has ball skills and put together some good tape, but he lacks the physical and athletic traits to help his draft slotting.
He ran a 4.51 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine, which isn’t elite speed for a wide receiver. He also has a “wingspan and hand size are below NFL standard,” per Zierlein. The Raiders always seem to have one under-the-radar wide receiver who lights up training camp and Turner is the most likely option to fill that role.
Raiders Still Need Speed at WR
Heading into the draft, it seemed like the only way the Raiders were going to draft a wide receiver is if it was a speedy deep threat. Tyquan Thornton out of Baylor and Danny Gray out of SMU were the most interesting options but the team missed out on both of them.
Tyron Johnson is the Raiders’ fastest wide receiver but he didn’t make a single catch with the team last season. Las Vegas may want to look at some other options in free agency. Adams can be a deep threat but he’s not known for his speed. Adding a true vertical threat could be what gets the Raiders offense over the top.