Mel Kiper Mock Draft 1.0: See who the Raiders select in Round 1

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You know it is draft season when the godfather, Mel Kiper Jr, releases his first mock draft of the year. As always, there are a number of surprising picks and matches in the first round.

So who does Kiper have the Raiders picking in the first round? Well, he has them going with another Clemson cornerback in Andrew Booth Jr. at pick No. 22. Here is why Kiper believes that could be a perfect pick for the Raiders in Round 1.

“This is another tough pick to figure out, with general manager Mike Mayock out and the Raiders now searching for someone to run their football operations. The Las Vegas roster has some issues, particularly along the right side of its offensive line and in the secondary, so I went with the top cornerback left on my board.

Fifth-round pick Nate Hobbs was a nice find in last year’s draft, but this defense could use Booth, a 6-foot press-coverage corner who allowed only one completion of more than 20 yards in 2021. He was extremely consistent over the past two seasons, locking down receivers. The Raiders ranked 27th in QBR allowed (51.4) this season; taking Booth would address a weakness.”

The Raiders could use another outside cornerback even if Casey Hayward Jr. returns in free agency. Trayvon Mullen is entering the final year of his contract and has struggled to stay healthy. When he is healthy, he is a quality cornerback. But they need more depth and Booth could help them in that area.

If the Raiders decide to grab a cornerback in the back-end of Round 1, Booth would be a fantastic option. However, there are several options that would make sense in that spot, including Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner, Trent McDuffie, etc. Cornerback, along with wide receiver, seem like the most likely options for the Raiders in Round 1.

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