Mack-less Raiders looking for rush at Senior Bowl

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  • By Grant Gordon NFL.com
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As is likely to come as little-to-no surprise, the absence of Khalil Mack still looms large over the Oakland Raiders.

With Raiders coach Jon Gruden and his staff helming the North squad in today's Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala., sizing up potential draft additions to fill the aforementioned pass-rushing void is paramount.

"Are we focused in on defensive ends at [the Senior Bowl]? Of course," Raiders general manager Mike Mayock said via NBC Sports Bay Area's Scott Blair. "We'd be dumb if we weren't. But we need pretty much everything on defense. We're looking at every position."

While Mack, who was traded by the Raiders before the season, was off in Chicago helping the Bears to a NFC North championship, the Raiders went 4-12 with a horrendous pass rush. In total, the Raiders had only 13 sacks. Mack had 12.5 all by his lonesome -- and he missed two games.

Even more problematic, the Raiders' leading sacker was defensive tackle Maurice Hurst, as Oakland's pressure off the edge was borderline non-existent.

"We have some guys who we're watching, guys who we're moving around on the line," Raiders defensive coordinator Paul Guenther said via Bay Area Sports. "The other team has some really exciting guys who could go in the top half of the draft."

Oakland has three first-round picks this spring. Currently, its focus is on the edge rushers in Alabama, which includes the North's Charles Omenihu (Texas), Zach Allen (Boston College) and Jalen Jelks (Oregon) and the South's Montez Sweat (Mississippi State), Jaylon Ferguson (Louisiana Tech) and Oshane Ximines (Old Dominion).

NFL.com's Bucky Brooks' mock draft has the Raiders taking edge rusher Rashan Gary, a junior out of Michigan, with the fourth-overall pick.

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