The Oakland Raiders have brought in a slew of 2014 NFL draft prospects in preparation for the draft on May 8th. Yesterday, the team hosted three prospects including quarterback Blake Bortles, wide receiver Jordan Matthews, and cornerback Dexter McDougal. Matthews may be the most intriguing because of his size and speed combination. The Raiders could give him a long look with their second-round pick.
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported that Matthews was visiting the Raiders on Monday. Oakland has shown serious interest in the wide receivers this draft and Matthews would be a nice selection. With the 2014 NFL Draft considered one of the deepest at that position; the Raiders will have chances to upgrade an already solid receiving corps.
Matthews is a Vanderbilt product who has terrific numbers in his four year career against stout SEC defenses. The 6'3", 212 pound wideout played in 51 games in his time with the Commodores. His junior and senior years are when Matthews took off and became a sought after prospect. He was a first team All-American and first team All-SEC selection in 2013, catching 112 passes for 1,477 yards and seven touchdowns. As a junior, Matthew collected 94 receptions for 1,323 yards and eight scores. He was a big play receiver at Vandy averaging 14.1 and 13.2 yards per reception as a junior and senior respectively.
At the 2014 NFL Combine, Matthews performed well, backing up his numbers with big-time physical attributes and solid drills. Matthews has among the strongest wide receivers at the combine, bench pressing 225 pounds 21 times, six more than outside linebacker Anthony Barr. Matthews also proved he has that size, strength, and speed combination, running the 40-yard dash in 4.46 seconds.
The Raiders could look at wide receiver Sammy Watkins with their fifth overall selection in the 2014 NFL Draft, but if they decide to go in another direction or fill another need, Matthews in the second-round is terrific value. He was all the physical gifts to be a big time receiver in the NFL as well as the production against good competition. There is a small chance Matthews could be available in the third-round for Oakland, but it seems they would need to get him in the second.
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