NFL Draft Rankings: The Raiders take Brock Bowers in the first round and shock the world.

On Saturday, September 30, 2023, at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn, Alabama, the Georgia Bulldogs and Auburn Tigers play. Georgia Bulldogs tight end Brock Bowers (19) sprints after a catch during the third quarter.

Ho. Ly. Crap. Georgia tight end Brock Bowers would not have been on the list if you had given me thirteen chances to predict who the Las Vegas Raiders would pick at number thirteen. A year after the Raiders selected Notre Dame tight end Michael Mayer in the second round, they returned to the well with an utter shocker.

And? It’s difficult to dislike.


It was a first to watch the Raiders grab the guy who fell into their lap because if they have a reputation, it’s for reaching for men who didn’t belong where they were picked. Bowers was ranked No. 7 by Dane Brugler of The Athletic, No. 3 by Danny Kelly of The Ringer, No. 7 by Daniel Jeremiah of, and No. 7 by Todd McShay (previously of ESPN). Despite not being in a dire situation, the Raiders received amazing value everywhere you looked.

And to be honest, that’s the only real complaint: the Raiders might have signed a top prospect at either offensive line or cornerback position given their obvious needs, but it’s difficult to be overly disappointed if risk reduction and long-term planning are the main priorities. The Raiders are acquiring in Bowers a player who has led Georgia in receiving the last three seasons, winning the John Mackey Award twice, which is given to the top tight end in the country.

Although Bowers isn’t very large at 6’3″ and 243 pounds, he did run a 4.5 40-yard dash in high school. His average of 8.5 yards after the catch in college as a result is impressive, and it will be crucial to produce the required value for his selection placement. Bowers will become a more valuable asset in the future as his classification will change from “tight end” to “offensive weapon” if he can duplicate such output at the professional level.

In regards to how this pick fits in Vegas, I believe the focus moves to Luke Getsy, the new offensive coordinator, and his ability to maximize the use of two tight end weapons on the field at once. Heck, now that they have two tight end threats, they can stack on that side to help confuse the defense and provide some pressure if they’re having trouble stopping players off the right side.

Finally, how does this affect head coach Antonio Pierce and general manager Tom Telesco for the remainder of the weekend? To be honest, not much. Both tackle and cornerback are still desperately needed, and if they don’t try to reenter the first round to address one of those needs (I would at least look into it, especially if corners slide), then that, along with an interior lineman, should be the main priority.

In summary, the Raiders achieved a triple draft—not quite the ideal balance of necessity and value, but you can’t settle for anything less than a “A” when you select one of the top 5-7 players in the draft, even though you selected 13th.

Written by schooleiwa

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