University of Miami
Selection: Third round, No. 68 overall
Chosen ahead of . . . CB P.J. Williams, WR Jaelen Strong, CB Josh Shaw, RB Tevin Coleman
College career: Walford was a third-team All-American and was second-team all ACC in his senior season. He had 121 receptions for 1,753 yards and 14 touchdowns over four seasons. Last season was his best. He has 44 catches for 676 yards and seven touchdowns, when he was regarded as one of the country’s best tight ends.
Scouting report: Walford was the No. 2 tight end on most scouting services. He’s quality pass catcher who is also a decent blocker, especially against linebackers. He can line up anywhere as a tight end or an H-back. He’s also a solid receiver who locates the ball well and has solid hands, even in traffic. He’s tough to corral in the middle of the field, and create mismatches against certain defenders.
How he fits: The Raiders were in need of a complete tight end and they might have drafted one in Walford. He’ll certainly add depth at tight end and compete for snaps with Mychal Rivera. The Raiders have a need for versatile tight ends, and Walford fits the bill. They should be able to move him around the field when necessary, something that will help create mismatches when the Raiders have an up-tempo attack.
Next scheduled pick: Fourth round, No. 102 overall (Saturday).