With the No. 27 pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, the Raiders selected Johnathan Abram, safety out of Mississippi State. Tone-setter at the short and intermediate portions of the field thanks to tremendous play-recognition ability, burst, and closing speed. Eliminates yards after the catch on crossing routes and will beat most running backs to the corner. Not as productive in deep coverage yet not a liability there, all of which make him one of the most well-rounded defensive backs in the class.
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Pete Prisco: They need to get better on all levels of their defense. They decided that Abram was a better pick than the corners. This kid will thump you. The Raiders need to get back to that. I probably would have taken one of the corners, but I like the kid. I think this is a move in the right direction.
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Dave Richard: I like Johnathan Abram a lot. He’s a physical safety with size who can start right away, which is what I presume the Raiders will do with him. There is some very good IDP potential for him since he can rack up plenty of tackles and other defensive stats in an Oakland defense that’s missing a fearsome pass rush. I’d look for him in the middle rounds and have expectations just south of what we had for Derwin James at this time last year. He’s another part of the Raiders DST puzzle, but it’s still incomplete and not worth having in Fantasy.
NFL comparison: Reshad Jones
Chris Trapasso: Jones and Abram are at their best relatively near the line of scrimmage, where they can halt the run and use their impressive speed to deliver devastating hits on receivers in the short to intermediate areas. Similar to Jones, Abram is best if allowed to play in attack mode at all times. His deep coverage leaves a little to be desired.