What are the Raiders’ cornerback, safety options in the draft?

One of the Raiders’ few glaring holes on defense is at cornerback.

The loss of Amik Robertson in free agency opened up a starting job on the outside. The good news is the Raiders are well positioned to fill it in this month’s NFL draft. The team should be able to grab a corner that can slide in next to Nate Hobbs and Josh Jones with one of its first three picks.

Meanwhile, the Raiders are set at safety. The presence of starters Tre’von Moehrig and Marcus Epps as well as versatile backup Isaiah Pola-Mao means the position is not a pressing need. The Raiders could still consider some intriguing late-round prospects.

Here is a look at some of the team’s secondary options in the draft:

First round

Overview

The Raiders should be able to secure a top-tier cornerback prospect with the 13th overall pick. It’s possible that no corners are taken in the draft’s first 12 selections.

First-round strategy: The prospects the Raiders could target at No. 13 include Alabama’s Terrion Arnold, Toledo’s Quinyon Mitchell and Clemson’s Nate Wiggins.

Arnold made a strong impression on Raiders coach Antonio Pierce at the NFL scouting combine and at Alabama’s pro day. His athleticism makes him an ideal fit for the Raiders’ scheme.

Mitchell shined at the Senior Bowl and showed he can compete against NFL-caliber receivers. He’s also proven he can play man or zone coverage.

Wiggins is a smooth athlete that could become an immediate starter.

Perfect match: Arnold

Second and third round

Overview

This class is deep at cornerback. That means the Raiders will have options the second day of the draft if they decide to use their first-round pick on a quarterback or offensive lineman.

Second- and third-round strategy: The Raiders would receive incredible value if Iowa’s Cooper DeJean is still available by the time their second-round pick comes around at 44th overall. Alabama’s Kool-Aid McKinstry or Michigan’s Mike Sainristil would also be strong additions.

Sainristil’s 5-foot-9 frame may move him down some draft boards but he could develop into a strong slot corner. The Raiders could move Hobbs outside if they take Sainristil.

Candidates for the team’s third-round pick at 77th overall include Iowa State’s T.J. Tampa, Rutgers’ Max Melton, Georgia’s Kamari Lassiter and Wake Forest’s Caelen Carson.

Melton may be able to compete for snaps right away.

Perfect matches: McKinstry (second round), Melton (third round)

Rounds four through seven

Overview: The Raiders could address cornerback and safety the draft’s final day because there have been plenty of value finds in the secondary the last few years.

Late-round strategy: The Raiders would be wise to consider Notre Dame’s Cam Hart in the fourth round.

He’s a long, athletic prospect with obvious NFL traits, even if it doesn’t always show up on film. He needs some work but his upside is impossible to ignore.

Texas Christian’s Josh Newton is another player who needs time to develop. His 2022 tape was strong and he has the traits to be a starter if a team is willing to help him iron out some issues.

Oregon’s Khyree Jackson is coming off a strong season where he started to show his potential. He could be a nice find for whatever team drafts him.

At safety, some late-round options for the Raiders include Southern California’s Calen Bullock, Washington’s Dominique Hampton and Utah’s Sione Vaki.

Perfect matches: Vaki (fourth round), Auburn cornerback Nehemiah Pritchett (fifth round), Florida State cornerback Jarrian Jones (sixth round), Texas safety Ryan Watts (seventh round)

Contact Vincent Bonsignore at vbonsignore@reviewjournal.com. Follow @VinnyBonsignore on X.

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