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Can We Tease Out the Mystery Team Trying to Grab the Raiders' #8 Pick?

A very intriguing and somewhat confusing story from the San Francisco Chronicle this evening.  The paper's Raiders Blog reports:

An unnamed team has offered the Raiders a second-round pick this year and a first-round pick next year in exchange for the Raiders' No. 8 overall pick. (Well, the team has a name, but our league source wouldn't share).

The key to understanding deals with futures picks, in this case a 2011 1st rounder, is that they are given in lieu of a pick one round lower this season.  In shorthand the formula can be understood as follows:

A 2010 2nd rounder = a 2011 1st rounder,
A 2010 3rd rounder = a 2011 2nd rounder,
and so on

Let's take an old Cowboys trade as an illustration.  In '04 Dallas had the 22nd overall pick, worth 780 points on the charts.  (See one here)  The Buffalo Bills wanted to move up from the 43rd pick and draft QB J.P. Losman.  The Bills pick was worth 470 points.  The difference was 310 points, or a late 2nd rounder, the 59th overall.  Dallas took the difference between the 59th and the lowest 2nd round pick (270 points) and asked Buffalo to give a pick worth roughly 40 points that year, in addition to their 2nd rounder. 

Buffalo surrendered its '04 5th rounder, (34 points) the 2nd rounder, the '05 1st, and the deal was done.  Dallas didn't know where the pick would wind up, but valued it as a late 2nd +1 round.

Which gets us back to Oakland today and that mystery team, which I am convinced is lurking in Dallas' neighborhood.  Lets do some more draft value math:

Oakland 8th overall = 1400 points.

Now, lets' use Dallas as the hypothetical mystery team.  Their 1st is worth 680 points.  Their 2nd is worth 310 points.  That's 990 points, leaving a difference of 410 points.  That's the value of a mid 2nd, the 49th overall in fact.  Dallas, of course, has only one 2nd rounder and can't flip two this year, as a team like New England could.  They could, however, flip their 2011 1st and perhaps satisfy the Raiders.

This hypothetical would give the Raiders the 27th pick, their 2nd rounder, the 39th overall, and Dallas' pick at 59.  Oakland could then flip the 39 to the Eagles and come away with Donovan McNabb, meeting Philly's demand of a pick in the top 42 for the veteran.  Oakland would still retain a 1st and a 2nd rounder this draft, not to mention an extra 1st next year.

I want to reiterate this is merely conjecture on my point.  I have heard nothing to suggest that Dallas is contemplating a move like this.  I simply used them to test the numbers and to point out that the Chronicle's reported offer only makes sense to Oakland if it involves a late '10 1st in addition to the '10 2nd and '11 1st.

In fact, the numbers suggest that the mystery team may be a little higher in the pecking order than the Cowboys, some team closer to 20. 

On the other hand, Jerry Jones has made many trades with Al Davis in the past.  Jerry is feeling the need to make a Super Bowl push, since he's hosting this coming February.  But if he's the crazy man willing to pitch a deal like this to Crazy Al, who is he after?  Would you attempt a deal like this to get a Bryan Bulaga and shore up Tony Romo's blind side?  Is this what the Dez Bryant due diligence is all about?

Or is this a team like San Diego, making a push for a back like C.J. Spiller, who could replace LaDainian Tomlinson and keep their Super Bowl hopes on track? 

It's up to Al Davis', which could mean anything, or nothing at all.

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