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Thursday, January 8, 2009
Raiders early draft look

By Bill Williamson
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson

This is the second in a series looking at the potential draft direction of the teams in the AFC West.

Oakland Raiders

Drafting: 7.

Needs: Wide receiver, offensive line, defensive tackle, safety.

Possible first-round picks

Eugene Monroe, OT, Virginia: The Raiders greatly need an anchor on the offensive line. There are decent skill-position players on Oakland's roster, but the team needs some protection. Monroe has the look of a solid option. Baylor offensive tackle Jason Smith could also be an option.

Michael Crabtree, WR, Texas Tech: It wouldn't be a surprise if the Red Raiders star ends up in Oakland. He's the premier receiver available and the Raiders yearn for a receiver. Plus, Oakland owner Al Davis loves skill-position players. If Crabtree is still on the board, Oakland will have a difficult time bypassing him. But Oakland needs to get some help on the offensive line at some point.

Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma: The Raiders needs some life in the middle of their defensive line. McCoy, if he decides to go pro, has great potential.

Wild card: If Oakland pursues a veteran receiver in free agency or through a trade, the team will likely look at offensive tackles in the first round.