When it comes to scouting college players on YouTube, one of the best guys to go to is Brett Kollman, whose 241,000 subscribers tell you all you need to know about this guy’s expertise.
While scrolling Twitter after the draft, I noticed that Kollman was one of the few people who was a big fan of what the Las Vegas Raiders did in picking Damon Arnette at No. 19. As a result, I reached out, and he agreed to do a quick interview breaking down the Raiders’ draft class. Many of these quotes have appeared throughout our “Deep Dives” series — along with an interview we posted earlier from Thor Nystrom of Rotoworld — but here is the full transcript of the interview:
1) The biggest question: Damon Arnette. This was a surprise pick for many, but it’s one you actually like — how would you defend this pick against the people who say 19 was way too high?
Mayock and Gruden are building the Raiders with a very specific identify – toughness, physicality, and intelligence. Arnette may not be the most athletically gifted corner in this class, but he IS the embodiment of that tough, physical, and intelligent profile that Mayock wants.
Arnette, along with his teammate in Jeff Okudah, is a master of using the sideline to his advantage and physically dominating receivers on the boundary. He might lose on inside releases from time to time against quicker receivers, but if offenses think they are going to get deep balls down the sideline against him, or freebies on curls or comebacks, they are in for a LONG day.
Arnette is a perfect scheme and culture fit for Vegas, and I think he’s gonna play there for a long time.
2) How do you see the Bryan Edwards pick complimenting Henry Ruggs? Feels like Edwards is the prototypical guy to put alongside Ruggs.
Again, Edwards is that tough, physical kind of player that this team covets. He’s a handful for smaller DBs to cover because he’s like a dominant center in the paint when he runs his routes, and when he gets the ball in space he instantly turns into a running back. I think he’s the perfect complementary skillset to Ruggs’ blinding speed.
3) The Raiders have said Lynn Bowden will start out as a running back (while still showing up all over the place). What’s your take on that philosophy? Can he make it as a running back?
I think he’ll basically be their version of Tarik Cohen, where he’s really only a running back in name. I expect him to probably get around 7-9 touches a game, split between carries and catches, with most of his catches coming from the slot when matched up against linebackers. That’s probably his best fit in this offense. Giving him anything more than 4-5 true carries a game would probably wear him out too fast. He’s not built for that kind of punishment (but Josh Jacobs is, so that’s nice).
4) The second pick of the Raiders that was questioned was Clemson LB/S Tanner Muse in the third. Do you have any thoughts on how Muse projects to the NFL as a linebacker (that’s where the Raiders will use him)?
I always thought he would end up at linebacker instead of safety just because of his build and skillset, so that potential move doesn’t really surprise me. He never really had the fluidity to stay at DB, but his straight line speed and explosiveness make him an intriguing option as a Will linebacker or “overhang” player in this defense. At worst he will probably be a special teams DEMON for this team for the next several years, but there is a good shot that he could find a home as Littleton’s backup at Will LB.
5) Last question: Amik Robertson. He seemed like everyone’s darling before the draft, and the Raiders were able to scoop him up in the fourth. I know he’s undersized, but does he have any chance of being an outside corner? Or strictly slot?
He sure plays like an outside corner with his physicality. That dude is TOUGH…just ask Texas’ offense…but you’re right that he will likely end up at nickel instead of boundary corner just because of his size. That being said, someone as tough as him could be an excellent asset inside, since nickel corners are often relied on to be primary force players against the run. Robertson could sneakily improve this edge run defense by a lot if he finds his way on the field as a rookie in the slot.
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