By: Joe Zollo
Early morning on March 10, former Steelers wide receiver, Antonio Brown, was traded from Pittsburgh to the Oakland Raiders in exchange for a 3rd and 5th round pick. This deal comes largely in part of Brown's outspoken rift between himself and the team.
It was originally reported that Brown would be dealt to Buffalo but the deal had fallen through due to speculation that Brown would not show up. It was reported that the Eagles and Steelers were "feeling things out" but things never were serious between the two.
New Raiders GM and former analyst, Mike Mayock, has made the first trade of his career and it turns out he absolutely robbed Pittsburgh. Although he has a few screws loose and could be a locker room problem, Brown is an all-pro receiver and trading two mid-round picks for a player of that caliber is an unbelievable football move.
Last season, the Raiders shipped out Amari Cooper to Dallas for a 2019 1st round pick and now they have recouped an even better receiver and have kept all three of their 1st round picks. There is speculation throughout the league that Oakland may look to shop one of their 1st round picks but we have recently seen the Minnesota Vikings make three 1st round draft picks back in 2013.
Those picks included DT Shariff Floyd at 23, CB Xavier Rhodes at 25, and WR/KR Cordarrelle Patterson at 29. If the Raiders were to keep all three picks, their positional draft picks may look very similar to what Minnesota did six years ago.
The Raiders have filled a major hole at WR without giving up any valuable draft stock. This puts Oakland in prime position to make some moves in the draft and add some more talent via free agency. This team is all about gaining momentum and hype for their move to Las Vegas and, so far, Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock have done a damn good job of it.