As has been widely reported at this time, the Raiders are well over the 2012 salary cap. It was initially posited that the team was $11 million over the cap or so but according to Profootballtalk.com, the number is actually closer to $25 Million over the projected salary cap of approximately $120 million.no comments
TFDS has looked at the Raiders biggest area of need already this offseason. We've also discussed the franchise tag and the chance or lack thereof that the Raiders will avail themselves of that option. We will now look at the Raiders' upcoming free agents and the likelihood of each player being re-signed.
Here are the players whose contracts are ending soon:
Yes, the Super Bowl is over with the NY Giants once again hoisting the championship trophy (Insert "boo" sound here). But as loyal Raider fans, we wore our jerseys proudly and watched the game almost rooting (I said ALMOST rooting) for the Giants to win over the dreaded Patriots. Damn you Tom Brady and damn that "tuck" rule. There's a word that rhymes with tuck that always comes to mind when we think about that infamous "tuck" rule.
In an interview on NFL Network, Raiders' owner Mark Davis hinted there will be further organizational changes past the football related changes that have swept the organization for the past month.
He addressed the fact that Al Davis was known for controlling all aspects of the organization stating, "When he came to the Raiders in 1963, there were maybe six coaches, eight coaches, maybe four front-office people. Scouts like Ron Wolf and those guys. They did it on a shoestring."
He continued, ""The business part really wasn't there. It was all football. Just win. Over the years, it just grew and grew and grew, and I think the size of the league and the size of the organization and the different things you had to deal with, media and all those things, kind of dwarfed the capabilities of the organization. Instead of a clean start with the organization, there's been a lot of plugging holes."
Amid all the coach speak to today's press conference (try this one, "We'll see, after we go through free agency, after we go through the draft, which grouping gives us the best chance to be successful. I would expect that we'll be very multiple in that regard"), Raider's Head Coach Dennis Allen dropped some interesting nuggets if we dig deeply enough.
First, if I were OLB/DE Kamerion Wimbley or FS Michael Huff, I wouldn't get too optimistic about my prospects. In response to a question directly about those to players and their high contract numbers Allen gave this response, "Right now, with all those guys, we're looking at all our options and what we have to do from a financial standpoint to make sure we put ourselves in the best position to get the best players out there and be on our final 53-man roster. So between Reggie and myself, we're working through all those scenarios right now." That is certainly not, as they say, a ringing endorsement.
Expect More Changes, Releases
Raiders' GM Reggie McKenzie spoke to Jerry McDonald of the Contra Costa Times and said that he's been meeting with agents of existing Raiders players in an attempt to bring contracts in line. McKenzie said, "We're looking at some things,'' McKenzie said. ''A lot of agents are in town, so we're looking to sit down with some of these guys and work some things out. Without being specific, there are things we've got to get done and we're in the process of doing that now. So yes, we can expect some things to happen.''
Today is the start of the actual activities for the 2012 NFL Combine in Indianapolis. Today, the first group of players will get their measurements and weigh-ins, which are all important to scouts to know what kind of shape the player is in and what type of frame the player has.
The Draft, and by extension the Combine, are of lesser importance this year for Raiders fans with the Raiders low amount of draft picks – they currently have only two of their 7 draft picks remaining prior to the Compensatory picks being awarded. Therefore, instead of examining who the Raiders will be looking at in the draft – because I honestly have no idea – we'll instead look at the Raider's top 5 needs and whether the team is likely to address them in the draft or free agency.