Oakland Raiders: 5 Undrafted Free Agents Who Can Make the Roster
5 Undrafted Free Agents Who Can Make the Oakland Raiders' Roster
When the 2013 NFL Draft came to a close Saturday, the rush was just beginning.
The Oakland Raiders signed 14 undrafted free agents Monday, many of whom will just be camp fodder. However, we have seen undrafted free agents become superstars in the NFL. Oakland may not have a superstar in this class, but the Raiders certainly have players who can make an impact in 2013.
The team addressed a couple of problem areas with these signings, most notably offensive skill players and the trenches. However, there were a couple of players that signed with Oakland that were confusing. The most obvious one is quarterback Kyle Padron out of Eastern Washington. He completed less than 60 percent of his passes and only threw for 2,491 yards and 17 touchdowns. There were better quarterbacks out there and it is unlikely Padron gets past the middle of August.
The undrafted free agents are sometimes even more intriguing than those who actually get drafted. Oakland signed some interesting players this offseason including Sam McGuffie out of Rice and Deonte Williams out of Cal Poly. These two players are dynamic players who can make an impact in the NFL. The issue of, course, is whether they can showcase their skills at the next level as undrafted free agents. One of these players appears on the list and one falls just short.
This list contains the five most likely players to make the roster, not the five that should. Oakland brought in a lot of talent, and the rest of the league should look hard at those that don’t make the Silver and Black in 2013.
Conner Vernon - WR Duke
Vernon is the only ACC player to ever record multiple seasons with 70 or more receptions. He caught 98 passes for 2,675 yards and 13 touchdowns in his career. Oakland needs wide receivers and Vernon could be an excellent fourth or fifth wide receiver for the Raiders. He has good size and great hands and will definitely make some noise this summer.
Billy Boyko - LB Lehigh
At 6-foot-2, Boyko is not the biggest guy, but he did make 104 tackles in 11 games last season. He can be a good special teams player and will likely stick on the roster for that reason alone.
John Wetzel - OT Boston College
Oakland needs help on the line and Wetzel is a solid option. He's a big guy that helped anchor the right side of Boston College's offensive line. He may not be the best right tackle in the country, but he can certainly push the current lineman for backup status.
Sam McGuffie - WR Rice
McGuffie is an electric player who will make some sort of impact for Oakland. He can play running back, slot receiver or be a kick/punt returner. The Raiders are in need of playmakers and McGuffie is just that. Dennis Allen will have loads of fun working with Greg Olson trying to find ways to use this kid.
Bobby Cowan - P Idaho
After Oakland let Shane Lechler walk this offseason, it was a given that the search for his replacement was on. Cowan will be in a heated competition with Marquette King for the job. The competition will likely go down to the last few practices before the final cut, and Cowan has as good of a shot as anyone.