Oakland Raiders  

 

Raiders GM McKenzie says team must make draft picks count

  • By NFL.com
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Oakland Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie said he is looking forward to making an impact in the draft in his first year on the job.

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"We've got five picks -- we need to make them all count," McKenzie said on Wednesday. "We need depth."

The Raiders traded their first-round pick in this year's draft to the Bengals for quarterback Carson Palmer. The team now has a third-round pick, a fourth-round pick, two fifth-round picks and one in the sixth round.

McKenzie, who took over GM duties that were traditionally performed by the late Raiders owner Al Davis, said owner Mark Davis (Al's son) has been "excellent," and has allowed him to do the job the way he wants to do it.

McKenzie said the team would place value on attributes other than player speed, which historically has been an important characteristic to the Raiders.

"It is hard to find 6-6, 311-pound defensive linemen that are athletic, and to top it off, that are good. And so when you get the chance, you take them," he said.

McKenzie explained the bottom line: "When it all comes down -- can the guy play football? At this point, we're not looking at needs. When I get the coaches in and start banging heads with those guys and figure out what they really would like to have ... we are going to get the best players."

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