Sunday Wrap-Up: A look at the Raiders FA roster
Oakland’s roster is full of question marks and depending on what happens with the collective bargaining agreement. With March 4th just around the corner, we’ll look at the players that could stay, or depart.
PLAYERS LIKELY TO STAY
Richard Seymour, DL
All signs point to the Silver & Black using their franchise tag on their veteran leader on defense. He was dominating for stretches in 2010 and was the vocal presence needed on the field and in the locker room for many of their developing players. His age is a concern, and Oakland would love to strike a multi-year deal with him to free up the tag for their tight end, but keeping Seymour is imperative especially with a gang of youths along the trenches and a new coordinator coming in. The tag could cost Oakland roughly $15 million for 2011.
Stanford Routt, CB
Oakland tendered first and third round choices last year, ensuring he’ll stick around. He’s a favorite of the owner and will likely stay and battle for a starting spot.
Hiram Eugene, S/ST
Evolved into special team stand-out last year, which will keep him around. It is unlikely anyone sees him as a contributor on defense, and Oakland knows exactly what his value is.
Zach Miller, TE
He has a value in the open market and many teams need a player of his abilities. Equally adept at pass blocking and at pass catching, Miller may be wooed or enticed by the chance of earning a tad more elsewhere. But he is the Raiders player rep and genuinely likes the vibe with the team.
Langston Walker, OL
Likely to stick around because of his stability. A very smart player, Walker has a home in Silver & Black as long as Al Davis is calling the shots.
Jon Condo, ST/OL
Sebastian Janikowski and Shane Lechler will lobby for his return – that’s enough for the front office.
Sam Williams, LB/ST
Not going anywhere. A role player that understand his value to the team.
Rock Cartwright, RB/ST
Players respected the veteran. He was key on special teams and a guy that was fiery during practices and on Sunday’s.
PLAYERS ON THE FRINGE
Nnamdi Asomugha, CB
There’s no way he earns the same paycheck he has the past few years. No one will just fork that over, but he will get teams inquiring about his services with what may appear like greener pastures. If Asomugha plays nice and gives Oakland a hometown discount, the Raiders will retain him. If the All-Pro cornerback wants to win and join what may appear a perennial winner, then he will depart.
Michael Bush, RB
It’s unknown how the arrest for drunk driving will effect his courtship. One thing is for sure, he is young, has little wear and tear on his body and can be valuable to a team that is looking for a primary ball carrier. Teams shy away from throwing money at running backs, but with his versatility and youth, someone could overpay pay him the first few years of a deal and force Oakland to let him walk. Hue Jackson would love to keep the duo together, it’s up to Bush whether or not he wants to be in spotlight elsewhere.
Kamerion Wimbley, LB
One of the fine moves Oakland made prior to 2010. But with that success, a team high nine sacks, now comes the attention of other suitors.
Michael Huff, FS
Has improved his play in recent years, but far from the playmaker that was highly touted coming out of Texas.
Ricky Brown, LB
A solid backup and coverage unit contributor. In March, Oakland gave him a second round tender. He won’t earn the nearly $1.6 million he did in 2010, but he has a spot on the roster.
Samson Satele, C
Played well enough to deserve another shot at locking down a spot at center, but with Tom Cable gone, does the rest of the staff feel the same way about him?
Mario Henderson, T
Replaced by a rookie, now may get a shot to play if the owner brings him back.
Thomas Howard, LB
Couldn’t break the rotation and was relegated to spot duty after starting since being drafted in 2006. Time to find a new home, since he won’t crack the line-up and he likely feels that he’s more than just a reserve.
Michael Bennett, RB
If Bush is back, Bennett will depart.
Bruce Gradkowski, QB
I can’t see Oakland keeping him around. Jason Campbell was at ease once the fiery Gradkowski was on injured reserve.
Johnnie Lee Higgins, WR
Had one campaign as a dangerous punt returner. Oakland can easily replace him and his inconsistent play.
Robert Gallery, G
With a change in philosophy along the trenches and Tom Cable’s departure, that could mark the end of Gallery’s career in Silver & Black that never materialized in the greatness that was anticipated.
Daniel Loper, OL
Plugged holes when needed, but at this point, he may find that job interesting on another club, especially if he doesn’t think he’ll have a fair shake in Oakland.
PICK AND CHOOSE
Kyle Boller or Charlie Frye, QBs
Both are undoubtedly backups. At least Frye has the respect of the organization and is looked at as a player/coach.
NOT GOING ANYWHERE DUE TO SERVICE YEARS
Desmond Bryant, DL
Came on strong in the second half of the season. A key reason why John Henderson may not be back.
Nick Miller, WR/ST
Doesn’t seem to have the pro pedigree, yet sticks around. May not make any other roster.
Marcel Reece, FB
One of the unsung heroes in 2010.
Contact Author: Victor Cotto – SB Report Columnist