With a 5th round selection, 140th overall, the Oakland Raiders traded up to select Maurice Hurst, defensive tackle out of Michigan.
The Oakland Raiders were set to make the 159th overall selection in the 2018 NFL Draft, but instead of patiently waiting for their turn to be on the clock, they made a move. Trading the #159 as well as pick #185, the Raiders traded up with the Colts for the 140th pick to make a pick that surprised everyone — Maurice Hurst, DT out of Michigan.
Raiders trade up to 140 for 159 and 185
— Vic Tafur (@VicTafur) April 28, 2018
Hurst was a popular potential option for the Raiders with the 10th overall selection, as a player with exceptional talent that would fill a major need for an interior pass rusher. But the pre-draft process revealed a heart condition that put his football career in jeopardy, and many NFL teams removed him from their draft board as a result.
He had been cleared by Michigan team doctors as well as doctors from Harvard, but he also had to pass the test with his future NFL team. The Raiders had Hurst off their board on Day 1 and Day 2 of the draft, but at some point, reward outweighs the risk and the team decided that point was the 5th round.
Like P.J. Hall before him, the selection of Hurst fills a major need for an interior pass rusher. The addition of Mo will provide an immediate impact player to push the pocket, which will immensely help Khalil Mack.
Hurst is undersized at 6’1″ and 292 pounds, but the undersized DT is the new rage thanks to the like of Aaron Donald and Geno Atkins. Being smaller allows DTs to gain leverage on larger offensive lineman or also squeeze through double teams. Or even triple teams.
Triple teamed AND held.
Still not enough against Mo Hurst pic.twitter.com/HwhQL07zVc
— Due# (@JDue51) November 11, 2017
Hurst can also get it done against the run, using his quick first step to rack up tackles in the backfield.
Mo Hurst 😳 pic.twitter.com/jyOaAZgSsP
— Billy Marshall (@BillyM_91) December 9, 2017
On the field, this is the biggest steal of the entire draft. That’s not just a cliche. If his health checks out and he’s a full go to continue his career, this is a phenomenal pick. But if he can’t end up playing because of his heart, only spending a 5th makes it not as bad of a failed investment.
With Mack, Bruce Irvin, Maurice Hurst, P.J. Hall, Eddie Vanderdoes, Arden Key and Mario Edwards Jr., and a couple others, the Raiders now have a much better looking stable of lineman to win the battle in the trenches. Nice group for Mike Trgovac and Paul Guenther to work with.