This my final projection for tomorrow's NFL Draft, which is just hours away. The Raiders will be on the clock at about 9am PT, and the consensus seems to be that Al Davis will make LSU QB JaMarcus Russell the top overall pick. Oakland has never had the #1 pick under Al Davis, but they have done an admirable job of not tipping their hand. There is no argument that the best player in the draft is Georgia Tech WR Calvin Johnson, by far. But, having passed on Matt Leinart and Jay Cutler last year, it will be difficult for the Raiders to pass on a QB again.
Enter new NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell: "With the first pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, the Oakland Raiders select..."
1. OAKLAND QB JaMarcus Russell, LSU
The Raiders have two options: Russell or Johnson. However, with Andrew Walter as the current starter, QB is a more pressing need.
2. DETROIT WR Calvin Johnson, Georgia Tech
The Lions will get some offers for Johnson, and are likely to trade down to #4, sending Johnson to Tampa Bay, but only if the price is right.
3. CLEVELAND QB Brady Quinn, Notre Dame
The Browns have a similar dilemma to the Raiders. QB is a position of need, but is RB Adrian Peterson too good to pass up?
4. TAMPA BAY DE Gaines Adams, Clemson
The Bucs may not be able to sit at #4 and wait for Johnson, so they will likely make a deal with Detroit, leaving Adams for the Lions.
5. ARIZONA OT Joe Thomas, Wisconsin
The Cardinals will take Thomas is he's still on the board. If he's gone, then look for them to trade down for Penn State's Levi Brown.
6. WASHINGTON DT Amobi Okoye, Louisville
The Redskins don't pick again until round 4, so look for the Redskins to trade down if the guy they are targeting is off the board.
7. MINNESOTA FS LaRon Landry, LSU
The Vikings are in position to select the best available player. LaRon Landry will provide an immediate impact on their defense.
8. ATLANTA (from HOU) OT Levi Brown, Penn State
The Falcons need a safety, but with Landry gone and Reggie Nelson being a slight reach, they decide to upgrade the o-line.
9. MIAMI DE Adam Carriker, Nebraska
The Dolphins can go in any direction with this pick. Carriker has great value because he can play in a 3-4 or 4-3 defense.
10. HOUSTON (from ATL) FS Reggie Nelson, Florida
The Texans also need a LT and may consider trading down if Brown is off the board. Nelson would provide a major upgrade at FS.
11. SAN FRANCISCO LB Patrick Willis, Ole Miss
The 49ers saw Willis up close and personal at the Senior Bowl practices, but teams may trade up to take him earlier.
12. BUFFALO RB Adrian Peterson, Oklahoma
The Bills need help at MLB, CB, and RB. They will be jumping for joy if Peterson falls this far.
13. ST. LOUIS DE Jamaal Anderson, Arkansas
The Rams took CB Tye Hill last year, and must continue to build the defense. They will take the best available defensive lineman.
14. CAROLINA TE Greg Olsen, Miami (FL)
The Panthers took RB DeAngelo Williams last year, and will add another offensive weapon, a TE that can stretch the field.
15. PITTSBURGH LB Lawrence Timmons, Florida State
The Steelers are transitioning from the 3-4 defense to a Tampa 2 scheme. Timmons has the ability play outside in either scheme.
16. GREEN BAY RB Marshawn Lynch, California
The Packers need a RB, first and foremost. They can address their needs for a big, physical WR and a playmaking TE in later rounds.
17. JACKSONVILLE CB Darrelle Revis, Pittsburgh
The Jaguars would love to see Reggie Nelson still on the board, but with him gone they go after the best value at DE or CB.
18. CINCINNATI DT Alan Branch, Michigan
The Bengals drafted a CB in the 1st Rd last year, and should now look to patch up the run defense, which has been terrible.
19. TENNESSEE WR Ted Ginn Jr., Ohio State
The Titans need to replace Pacman Jones not only at CB, but in the return game as well. Ted Ginn Jr. more than satisfies the latter.
20. NY GIANTS OT Joe Staley, Central Michigan
The Giants are very thin at CB, and will be tempted to take Leon Hall, but the left tackle class is a lot less deep than the CB class.
21. DENVER DE Anthony Spencer, Purdue
The Broncos need an explosive pass rusher to fully compliment their outstanding tandem at CB (Champ Bailey and Dre Bly).
22. DALLAS CB Leon Hall, Michigan
The Cowboys must continue to upgrade the secondary, but it'll hard to pass up LSU's Dwayne Bowe or USC's Dwayne Jarrett.
23. KANSAS CITY WR Dwayne Jarrett, USC
The Chiefs liked Tamba Hali last year and drafted him higher than most people expected. I see a similar situation with Jarrett.
24. NEW ENGLAND S Michael Griffin, Texas
The Patriots have to be concerned with the recent injuries that have plagued SS Rodney Harrison.
25. NY JETS CB Chris Houston, Arkansas
The Jets need a pass-rushing OLB, but with Spencer gone, they draft the best available CB.
26. PHILADELPHIA S Brandon Meriweather, Miami (FL)
The Eagles need a DB after releasing SS Michael Lewis. FS Brian Dawkins can mentor his eventual replacement.
27. NEW ORLEANS CB Aaron Ross, Texas
The Saints defense overachieved last season, but they were extremely vulnerable at CB, and still are.
28. NEW ENGLAND LB Paul Posluszny, Penn State
The Patriots are the only team with two first round picks, and will likely use them to add depth to their aging defense.
29. BALTIMORE OG Ben Grubbs, Auburn
The Ravens need lots of help up front, especially at tackle, but the best value at pick 29 will be to take Grubbs.
30. SAN DIEGO WR Robert Meachem, Tennessee
The Chargers need a guy that can stretch the field and open things up for Tomlinson and TE Antonio Gates.
31. CHICAGO WR Dwayne Bowe, LSU
The Bears are still negotiating trades for disgruntled LB Lance Briggs, but it doesn't look like they can make a deal before this weekend.
32. INDIANAPOLIS LB Jon Beason, Miami (FL)
The Colts replaced Edgerrin James through the draft last season by selecting Joseph Addai. Now they'll look to replace LB Cato June.
33. OAKLAND C Ryan Kalil, USC
34. DETROIT LB David Harris, Michigan
35. CLEVELAND CB Marcus McCauley, Fresno State
36. TAMPA BAY DT Justin Harrell, Tennessee
37. CHICAGO (from NYJ via WAS) OT Tony Ugoh, Arkansas
38. ARIZONA DE Jarvis Moss, Florida
39. ATLANTA (from HOU) DE Charles Johnson, Georgia
40. MIAMI OL Arron Sears, Tennessee
41. MINNESOTA WR Steve Smith, USC
42. SAN FRANCISCO WR Anthony Gonzalez, Ohio State
43. BUFFALO CB Eric Wright, UNLV
44. ATLANTA DT DeMarcus "Tank" Tyler, NC State
45. CAROLINA LB Buster Davis, Florida State
46. PITTSBURGH OG Justin Blaylock, Texas
47. GREEN BAY TE Zach Miller, Arizona State
48. JACKSONVILLE DE Ray McDonald, Florida
49. CINCINNATI CB Josh Wilson, Maryland
50. TENNESSEE CB Daymeion Hughes, California
51. NY GIANTS CB Tarnard Jackson, Syracuse
52. ST. LOUIS RB Brian Leonard, Rutgers
53. DALLAS WR Sidney Rice, South Carolina
54. KANSAS CITY CB Jonathan Wade, Tennessee
55. SEATTLE DT Turk McBride, Tennessee
56. DENVER WR Jason Hill, Washington State
57. PHILADELPHIA QB Trent Edwards, Stanford
58. NEW ORLEANS LB Justin Durant, Hampton
59. NY JETS TE Ben Patrick, Delaware
60. MIAMI (from NE) QB Drew Stanton, Michigan State
61. BALTIMORE DE LaMarr Woodley, Michigan
62. SAN DIEGO S Eric Weddle, Utah
63. NY JETS (from CHI) OLB Stewart Bradley, Nebraska
64. TAMPA BAY (from IND) WR Craig Davis, LSU