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Red Raiders on Cardinals’ Radar?

Iowa State v Texas Tech Photo by John Weast/Getty Images

There are currently 14 Texas Tech alums on NFL rosters.

Two of them are untouchable:

QB Patrick Mahomes 3, 6-2, 225, D1 17, KC

WR Keke Coutee 2, 5-11, 187, D4 18, HOU

The remaining 12 are on the 2019 roster bubbles. Here are 5 Red Raiders who might be of interest to the Cardinals:

T/G Le’Raven Clark 4, 6-5, 311, D3 16, IND

The Colts have been using Clark as a back-up LT and RG. They have some depth at tackle behind starting LT Anthony Castonzo and starting RT Braden Smith in Antonio Garcia, Joe Haeg, J’Marcus Webb and 7th round pick Jackson Barton. Garcia is suspended for the first 4 games, which increases Clark’s chances of sticking on the roster, at least until Week 5. But, because Clark is in the final year of his rookie contract at $926K this year and is not likely to be re-signed as a 2020 UFA, the Colts may elect to keep J’Marcus Webb or Jackson Barton, knowing that Garcia is on his way back to the roster.

Here is what’s Lance Zierlein summarized about Clark when he was entering the 2016 NFL Draft:

”Clark is an ascending left tackle prospect with the elite foot quickness and length that NFL teams simply don’t pass up for very long. Clark could still use more muscle on his frame and will need to be much more consistent with his technique rather than just relying on his length if he is to reach his full potential in the pros. Left tackles with his potential in pass protection carry first-round value and Clark has a Pro Bowl upside with the floor of an average NFL starter.”

Here’s Clark’s 2016 NFL Draft video:

RB DeAndre Washington 4, 508, 205, D5 16, OAK

DeAndre Washington set all kinds of all-purpose RB records while playing for Kliff Kingsbury at Texas Tech. After being drafted by the Raiders in the 5th round in 2016, Washington gained close to 500 yards as a rookie. Highlights of his rookie production are on the video. Since his rookie season, however, Washington hasn’t seen much of the field on game days. And now that the Raiders drafted Josh Jacobs in the 1st round this year and have depth at RB in Jalen Richard, Doug Martin and Chris Warren, there’s a chance that Washington could be waived or traded.

Here is Lance Zierlein’s summary of Washington’s production under Kingsbury at Texas Tech:

”Smart coaches take advantage of the talent that is on their roster. Former Tech quarterback Kliff Kingsbury showed his intelligence by figuring out that he needed to get the rock to his wrecking ball named DeAndre Washington, despite the team’s reputation as a pass-first squad. Certainly, Washington contributed throughout his career, starting off playing in 11 games (one start) as a true freshman (77-366, three touchdowns). But that year ended with a torn ACL, so he was forced to redshirt the 2012 season. Washington got back on track as a sophomore (107-485, four touchdowns in 12 games, two starts) and became “the man” for Tech as a junior, garnering second-team All-Big 12 honors by covering 1,103 yards on just 188 carries (5.9 per rush) and scoring twice. Given the chance to carry the ball nearly 20 times a game as a senior, Washington proved his worth with a first-team All-Big 12 pick (233-1,492, 14 touchdowns). NFL teams won’t ignore his contributions in the passing game, either (30-328, two touchdowns in 2014; 41-385, two touchdowns in 2015).”

WR Jakeem Grant, 4, 5-7, 169, D6 16, MIA

Jakeem Grant is a classic diminutive Red Raider burner who can threaten defenses deep with his 4.34 speed (2016 Combine). In addition, he is a big play waiting to happen on bubble screens and WR jet sweeps. In Miami he is listed as the #5 WR behind Devante Parker, Kenny Stills, Albert Wilson and Brice Butler. The concern about Grant has always been size and injuries. Behind Grant, the Dolphins are high on Isaiah Ford, Preston Williams, Trenton Irwin and Ricardo Louis. Being in the last year of his rookie contract could make Jakeem Grant available via trade.

Here is Lance Zierlein’s pre-draft summary of Grant:

”Grant’s size will immediately eliminate him from many draft boards, but teams looking for pure speed, a kick returner and a slot option who can add new wrinkles to an offense may have Grant on a target list. Grant might be small, but he doesn’t play small and he’s certainly not a novelty act. Grant’s pro day workout might have created enough buzz to warrant a third-day selection.”

2018 Highlights:

LB Sam Eguavoen, R, 6-1, 229, SFA 19, MIA

Sam Eguavoen was an 2018 All-Star LB in the CFL. According to Justin Hier of The Phinsider: “Eguavoen went undrafted out of Texas Tech back in 2015 and took a year off from football. In February of 2016, he signed with the Roughriders, playing his first game with the team in June of that year. In his first season, Eguavoen played in just six games and made 21 tackles. In 2017, his role was expanded and the young defender played in 14 games, recording 57 tackles and a sack. His most productive season came this past year, when the 25-year old played in 18 games and accumulated 81 tackles and three sacks. Eguavoen also made a bevy of game changing plays in his final season in Saskatchewan, as he racked up two forced fumbles, an interception, and two defensive touchdowns.”

Eguavoen’s CFL highlights here are impressive:

DE Branden Jackson, 3, 6-4, 295, CFA 16, SEA

Branden Jackson made the Seahawks’ roster the past two years and in limited action recorded 22 tackles and 1.5 sacks. He likes to be known as a blue collar type player and as such, he sometimes wears a hardhat around the clubhouse. At Jackson’s size, 6-4, 295, he could be appealing to the Cardinals as a combo 34DE and inside/outside pass rusher in the nickel.

Here he sacks Derek Carr on an inside rush from the nickel. He is #97, not the DE highlighted on the video.

J.R. Sweezy would certainly know a lot about Branden Jackson’s talent and effort.

More Red Raiders Trying To Make NFL Rosters:

WR Derrick Willies, 2, 6-4, 207, CFA 18 CLE

S Cody Davis, 7, 6-1, 203, CFA 13, JAX

WR Dylan Cantrell, 1, 6-3, 221, D6 18, LAC

LB Dakota Allen, R, 6-1, 232, D7 19, LAR

WR Cameron Batson, 2, 5-8, 175, CFA 18, TEN

WR Antoine Wesley, R, 6-4, 206, CFA 19, BAL

LB Pete Robertson, 1, 6-1, 235, CFA 16, ARI

Which 3 of the bubble players would you like to see the Cardinals acquire?