One of the things that scouts loved about linebacker Khalil Mack heading into the draft was that he was a versatile enough player to fit into the defensive scheme of any team that wound up selecting him in the first round.
The Raiders were the team that got Mack with the fifth overall selection and they spent a lot of time this offseason putting Mack into different positions to see how he’ll be most effective.
“We’ve got his head spinning right now,” coach Dennis Allen said, via Scott Bair of CSNBayArea.com. “That’s a good thing. We’re going to try to throw as much at him as we can throughout the rest of this offseason and really even into the early part of training camp, and then at some point we’ll settle down to the things that we can execute as a team and execute at a high level.”
Mack admits to being overloaded with information right now, but says he doesn’t feel bothered by it because there are “no more baby steps” once you get to the professional level and he knows that the Raiders are trying to find the right formula to put a winning team on the field.
“It’s a challenge, and I’m open to the challenge,” Mack said. “I’m trying to go out there every day and work on something that they want me to work on, and get better at it. And try not to make the same mistakes. That’s my biggest thing. I try to go out there and do what I can to make plays and be in the right position. That’s all they’re trying to do, to put me in the right position to make plays. I’m thankful for that.”
No single player can fix every flaw all by himself, but he can lift the players around him if he plays at a high enough level. The Raiders and plenty of others think that Mack can be that kind of player and being flexible with how to deploy him should help him fulfill those expectations.