Raiders Take Russell

JaMarcus Russell barely had to wait before taking the stage as an Oakland Raider at Saturday’s NFL draft. Brady Quinn was the forgotten quarterback, plummeting all the way to Cleveland at 22nd. Russell was the top overall choice, by the offense-deficient Raiders. The 6-foot-6 junior QB who can throw the ball 80 yards fits the mold for Al Davis, who loves the deep ball. Obviously, in the eyes of NFL teams, LSU players have plenty of draft-day luster. Five spots after Russell, Tigers safety LaRon Landry went to Washington as the glow of the Golden Dome severely faded. Quinn sat and watched 21 players chosen before he went to the Browns, the team he grew up rooting for in Dublin, Ohio. Once considered the best prospect in this year’s crop, he was still unchosen when the Browns traded back into the first round, getting Dallas’ pick. Russell is the obvious pick for the Raiders because he fills a pressing need and has the most value at the position. Although he needs to continue to improve his decision making and work on his footwork, he has rare size and arm strength. If Lane Kiffin can get Russell to buy into his system, the sky is the limit for Russell and the Raiders.

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