Does coaching Senior Bowl give Raiders draft edge?

Does coaching Senior Bowl give Raiders draft edge?
January 21, 2013, 1:45 pm
Share This Post

Dennis Allen's staff is the fifth from the Raiders to coach the Senior Bowl, following Lane Kiffin, Norv Turner, Jon Gruden and Art Shell. (USA TODAY IMAGES)

MOBILE, Ala. -- It's been said that being selected to coach a side in the Senior Bowl is akin to getting a high draft pick -- you're there for a reason. And that reason usually is not good.

The Raiders, who hold the No. 3 overall draft pick, staggered to a 4-12 season in coach Dennis Allen's rookie year. But there is a benefit to coaching the North squad here at the Senior Bowl -- the Raiders will have the most intimate knowledge of half the players here. It's an inherent advantage over 30 of the other teams (Detroit is coaching the South squad).

"Number one, we can see hands on how they can pick up a system, how they lead the groups, how they are in the meeting rooms, their communication skills," Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie said last week. "You’re talking about, we can sit around in their meeting rooms, we’ll have scouts in there, and we’re getting hands-on information."

Yes, the Raiders scouts, who could only have cursory contact with prospects if their team was not coaching, will have relatively unfettered access as well.

"Absolutely," McKenzie said, "When we’re in position meetings, they’re right there. We get to be a part of it. It’s something, too, when you can eat at a dinner table with guys and get to know guys from that end as opposed to an interview process that is more formal. They let their guard down and you can see how they mix and mingle with their teammates. I think it’s invaluable information to get to see the real person."

Former Raiders coach Tom Flores, who has four Super Bowl rings, once told me that if you're drafting high, you cannot really afford to draft for a specific need…because you then have a lot of needs. Get it?

A sampling, then, of some of the players the Raiders are coaching this week:

North Carolina State QB Mike Glennon, Oregon RB Kenjon Barner, Michigan WR Denard Robinson, San Jose State TE Ryan Otten, Notre Dame OL Braxton Cave, Texas DL Alex Okafor, Ohio State LB John Simon and USC DB T.J. McDonald.

While Allen has never coached in the Senior Bowl, four previous Raiders coaching staffs have -- Lane Kiffin's in 2008, Norv Turner's in 2005, Jon Gruden's in 1999 and Art Shell's in 1992, when an "AFC vs. NFC" format was used, rather than "North vs. South."

In 2005, the Raiders coached and then drafted San Diego State linebacker Kirk Morrison, as well as Wisconsin defensive tackle Anttaj Hawthorne. In 1999, the Raiders coached and drafted Maryland linebacker Eric Barton, though they also drafted two players against whom they coached in Florida State defensive end Tony Bryant and East Carolina linebacker Rod Coleman.

SENIOR BOWL NORTH ROSTER      
             
# FIRST LAST POS. HT WT SCHOOL
7 Zac  Dysert QB 6'3" 228 Miami OH
8 Mike  Glennon QB 6'5" 232 North Carolina State
12 Ryan  Nassib QB 6'2" 228 Syracuse
             
24 Kenjon Barner RB 5'11" 192 Oregon
23 Johnathan Franklin RB 5'10" 198 UCLA
28 Robbie  Rouse RB 5'7" 190 Fresno State
             
40 Kyle Juszczyk FB 6'3" 240 Harvard
             
3 Aaron Dobson WR 6'2" 206 Marshall
1 Marquise Goodwin WR 5'9" 177 Texas
83 Chris  Harper WR 6'1" 228 Kansas State
33 Aaron  Mellette WR 6'4" 220 Elon
16 Denard Robinson WR 5'11" 197 Michigan
2 Markus  Wheaton WR 6'0" 182 Oregon State
             
18 Jack  Doyle TE 6'6" 253 Western Kentucky
44 Nick Kasa TE 6'6" 260 Colorado
82 Ryan  Otten TE 6'5" 245 San Jose State
             
52 Braxston Cave OL 6'3" 304 Notre Dame
79 Eric Fisher OL 6'7" 305 Central Michigan
74 Kyle Long OL 6'7" 312 Oregon
70 Joe Madsen OL 6'4" 305 West Virginia
67 Justin Pugh OL 6'5" 297 Syracuse
76 David Quessenberry OL 6'6" 295 San Jose State
72 Hugh Thornton OL 6'4" 310 Illinois
58 Ricky Wagner OL 6'6" 318 Wisconsin
66 Brian  Winters OL 6'5" 310 Kent State
             
13 Quinn Sharp PK 6'1" 205 Oklahoma State
             
45 Luke  Ingram LS 6'6" 235 Hawaii
             
99 Michael Buchanan DL 6'5" 240 Illinois
96 Margus  Hunt DL 6'7" 280 SMU
57 Datone Jones DL 6'4" 275 UCLA
80 Alex Okafor DL 6'5" 265 Texas
97 Jordan Hill DL 6'1" 292 Penn State
93 Kawann Short DL 6'3" 315 Purdue
66 Brandon  Williams DL 6'3" 325 Missouri Southern
92 Sylvester Williams DL 6'3" 320 North Carolina
             
43 Steve Beauharnais LB 6'2" 230 Rutgers
44 Arthur Brown LB 6'1" 228 Kansas State
20 Khaseem  Greene LB 6'1" 230 Rutgers
48 Kevin  Reddick LB 6'2" 240 North Carolina
54 John Simon LB 6'2" 263 Ohio State
46 Trevardo Williams LB 6'2" 233 Connecticut
             
37 Jonathan  Cyprien DB 6'0" 210 Florida International
17 Will Davis DB 6'0" 186 Utah State
27 Dwayne Gratz DB 6'0" 198 Connecticut
7 TJ  McDonald DB 6'2" 205 USC
14 Jordan  Poyer DB 5'11" 190 Oregon State
21 Jamar Taylor DB 5'11" 196 Boise State
16 Philip Thomas DB 6'1" 215 Fresno State
6 Desmond  Trufant  DB 6'0" 186 Washington
4 Duke Williams DB 6'1" 200 Nevada
15 Blidi Wreh-Wilson DB 6'1" 190 Connecticut
             
18 Jeff Locke PT 6'0" 208 UCLA
             
             
SENIOR BOWL SOUTH ROSTER      
             
# FIRST LAST POS. HT WT SCHOOL
14 Landry Jones QB 6'4" 220 Oklahoma
3 EJ  Manuel QB 6'4" 240 Florida State
8 Tyler  Wilson QB 6'2" 218 Arkansas
             
23 Andre Ellington RB 5'9" 192 Clemson
22 Mike Gillislee RB 5'11" 210 Florida
32 Onterio McCalebb RB / RS 5'11" 173 Auburn
33 Stepfan  Taylor RB 5'11" 215 Stanford
             
42 Tommy  Bohanon FB 6'2" 245 Wake Forest
             
11 Cobi Hamilton  WR 6'2" 209 Arkansas
12 Tavarres  King WR 6'1" 200 Georgia
4 Quinton Patton WR 6'2" 195 Louisiana Tech
25 Ryan Swope WR 6'0" 206 Texas A&M
82 Conner Vernon WR 6'1" 200 Duke
2 Terrance Williams WR 6'2" 205 Baylor
             
88 Vance McDonald TE 6'4" 260 Rice
81 Mychal Rivera TE 6'3" 244 Tennessee
89 Michael  Williams TE 6'5" 272 Alabama
             
72 Oday Aboushi OL 6'6" 310 Virginia 
76 D.J. Fluker OL 6'6" 335 Alabama
64 Dalton  Freeman OL 6'5" 285 Clemson
65 Garrett Gilkey OL 6'7" 320 Chadron State
69 Lane  Johnson OL 6'6" 303 Oklahoma
73 Xavier Nixon OL 6'5" 314 Florida
57 Brian Schwenke OL 6'4" 300 Cal
71 Dallas Thomas OL 6'5" 310 Tennessee
74 J.C. Tretter OL 6'4" 300 Cornell
67 Larry Warford OL 6'3" 343 Kentucky
             
18 Dustin Hopkins PK 6'2" 190 Florida State
             
51 Carson Tinker LS 6'1" 224 Alabama
             
47 Ezekial Ansah DL 6'5" 270 Brigham Young
93 Everett Dawkins DL 6'2" 304 Florida State
89 Lavar  Edwards DL 6'5" 258 LSU
97 Malliciah Goodman DL 6'4" 270 Clemson
46 Corey Grissom DL 6'2" 316 South Florida
54 Montori Hughes DL 6'4" 327 Tennessee-Martin
6 John Jenkins DL 6'3" 358 Georgia
83 Cornelius Washington DL 6'4" 268 Georgia
             
8 Jamie Collins LB 6'1" 228 Southern Miss
25 Zaviar  Gooden LB 6'2" 230 Missouri
35 Nico Johnson LB 6'2" 245 Alabama
10 Sean Porter LB 6'2" 230 Texas A&M
44 Chase  Thomas LB 6'4" 248 Stanford
1 Vince Williams LB 6'1" 250 Florida State
             
23 Robert Alford DB 6'0" 185 Southeastern La.
24 Marc Anthony DB 6'0" 200 Cal
29 Sanders Commings DB 6'2" 216 Georgia
37 Robert Lester DB 6'2" 212 Alabama
2 Leon  McFadden DB 5'10" 190 San Diego State
18 Bacarri Rambo DB 6'0" 210 Georgia
22 B.W.  Webb DB 5'10" 180 William & Mary
19 J.J. Wilcox DB 6'0" 215 Georgia Southern
26 Shawn Williams DB 6'1" 218 Georgia
             
86 Ryan Allen PT 6'2" 215 Louisiana Tech