Brown, Revis on the rise in the first round

Last year, the Raiders passed on selecting a QB in the NFL draft's first round. They should learn from that mistake and select LSU QB JaMarcus Russell  and not Georgia Tech WR Calvin Johnson  with the first pick overall in the draft Saturday, Mel Kiper writes.

Originally Published: April 24, 2007
By Mel Kiper Jr. |
In the days leading up to the NFL draft Saturday and Sunday, there are last-minute moves that can change the complexion of the first round. Last year it was defensive end Mario Williams going to Houston after it seemed running back Reggie Bush was a lock to be the No. 1 pick. This year, the rumors start at the top with the Oakland Raiders and what they might do with the top pick.

• The Raiders reportedly are going after a free-agent quarterback (Tim Rattay, Josh McCown, Daunte Culpepper) as a stopgap that would allow them to take Georgia Tech wide receiver Calvin Johnson instead of LSU quarterback JaMarcus Russell. I can't buy into that because what good is it to have a bridge to a rookie quarterback if your new passer isn't that good? I understand Russell isn't going to start Week 1, but Rattay and McCown aren't much different than Andrew Walter or Aaron Brooks. Oakland needs a bridge to Russell, but bringing in Rattay or McCown shouldn't prevent the Raiders from drafting Russell. The Raiders have to pick Russell, they really can't go any other way. Passing on Matt Leinart and Jay Cutler last year -- when they really needed a quarterback-- has really affected them in this draft.

Mel Kiper Jr.

Football analyst