Waiting for the tag


As franchise tags pile up, still no word from the Raiders regarding Nnamdi Asomugha, who is expected to receive that designation by Thursday’s deadline.

Among those players who have been designated so far or have been told by their teams they will be tagged:

— Chiefs defensive end Jarred Allen. With his history of alcohol abuse problems, you could forgive the Chiefs for simply tagging him every year and paying him a hefty salary ($8.8 million this year) rather than break the bank with a signing bonus. Allen won’t be happy about it, however.

“If I play under the franchise tag, this will be my last year with the Chiefs,” Allen told NFL.com at the Pro Bowl.

— Ravens defensive end/linebacker Terrell Suggs. Suggs figures to be disgruntled as well. He was expecting the $8.8 million defensive end tender, and instead will get the $8 million tender of an outside linebacker. Seems foolish for the Ravens to get one of their best players upset over $800,000.

— Bengals offensive lineman Stacy Andrews ($7.5 million). A mild surprise, in that Justin Smith, last year’s franchise player, is now on the open market. Smith is coming off a two-sack season, but could make out in free agency since Allen and Suggs will both require two first-round draft picks to sign. Might be too rich for the Raiders blood.

— Cardinals linebacker Karlos Dansby. No impact for the Raiders, who have relatively inexpensive active linebackers in Kirk Morrison and Thomas Howard.

— Eagles TE L.J. Smith. Colts tight end Dallas Clark could also get a one-year, $4.5 million tender. Zach Miller looked good enough that he may one day himself get a franchise tag.

— Panthers RT Jordan Gross. The Raiders need long-term solutions at both tackles, unless they’re convinced Paul McQuistan is the answer on the right side. Had Gross not been franchised, they probably would have at least placed a call.

— Tennessee DT Albert Haynesworth. Robert Gallery had an encouraging year as a left guard, but could do nothing with Haynesworth. Risky for the longterm because he produced in a contract year.

Green Bay hasn’t tipped its hand yet regarding defensive tackle Corey Williams, who would break the bank in light of Haynesworth’s tag.

Kiper call
For what it’s worth, longtime draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. was available by conference call Tuesday through ESPN and had a few thoughts regarding the Raiders.

Whether you like Kiper or not, his recall regarding virtually any prospect, no matter how anonymous, is remarkable. On his Web page, Kiper had the Raiders taking Arkansas running back Darren McFadden, but conceded the landscape may have changed with the signing of Justin Fargas.

“That’s the question. Fargas is a good back. You’ve got other guys in the mix as well,” Kiper said. “So you’ve got a lot of guys, the question is do you have a lot of average guys? Fargas proved to be better than average. I don’t think you necessarily have to take McFadden, and he could be gone anyway, depending on how the coin flip goes.”

Kiper said he rates Glenn Dorsey as the top defensive tackle in the draft, but said there are people who like USC’s Sedrick Ellis better.

“I could see Sedrick Ellis as a Raider,” Kiper said.

Kiper said McFadden’s problems with fumbling are an issue, but likes his overall skills set even if he is not the runner Adrian Peterson was last year.

Not everyone shares Kiper’s feeling about McFadden. The NFL Network’s Mike Mayock has Rashard Mendenhall of Illinois as his top back.

Kiper said the Raiders’ 19-61 record over the past five years may have its roots in the draft.

“I think it’s had a lot to do with it. You look back at it and say, `OK, how many of those guys actually became quality starters?,’ ” Kiper said. “I think you can always look at your football team, and if they’re lacking, they’re lacking because of the draft not being as beneficial as it should be.”

Aging wideouts available
If the Raiders wanted to go retro to the days when Jerry Rice and Tim Brown were on their last legs, Keyshawn Johnson wants to make a comeback and Muhsin Muhammad was released by the Chicago Bears.

With Jerry Porter scheduled to become a free agent, the Raiders are extraordinarily thin at wide receiver with Ronald Curry, Johnnie Lee Higgins, Jonathan Holland, Todd Watkins, Drisan James and Will Buchanon under contract.

While no wide receiver attending the NFL scouting combine is thought to be a No. 3 or 4 selection, there are a few targets worth considering if the Raiders did what they never do and move back in the draft.

Cal’s DeSean Jackson is the most explosive and a dangerous punt return specialist Larger targets include Oklahoma’s Malcolm Kelly (6-4, 218 pounds) and Indiana’s James Hardy (6-6, 220). Michigan’s Mario Manningham is also considered a potential first-round pick. All are underclassmen, so none were scouted during the college all-star circuit.

Kiper thinks Kelly could be the first receiver taken by the time the draft comes around, and also said he thinks Cal’s LaValle Hawkins could be an early second-round pick or even sneak into the first round.

Will be headed to the combine Wednesday and will file daily blogs from Indianapolis . . .


Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • Rob Ryan’s Pickled Liver

    Fabian was already benched due to poor performance.

    That’s the one good thing RR did…he benched Fabian & Turdell early on…then Schwag was riding pine by season’s end.

  • Rob Ryan’s Pickled Liver

    Fabian…Turdell…and Schwag SUCK!

  • La Milicia Negra

    I had hoped for some news by Jerry by now, I’ll go play some online poker and wait a bit longer!

  • La Milicia Negra


    I have nothing to hang it on, but i think Sands will surprise us next year!

  • tom flores

    FL Pete

    I knew he was too good to not get tagged…you may remember my post a few days ago outlining FAs that could help us..which included their salries ?? he was on my list but with an asterisk because of his potential to be tagged…

    Justin Smith and Lance Briggs cannot be tagged so why not go after them ??? They are both upgrades and worth the 6-8 M salries they will demand in free agency.

    They will fill gaps for us and allow us to focus on the draft and minimize our “needs” in the draft.

  • i.e. reading up on Red Bryant on NFL.com and the guys looks to be a stud run stuffer. The only concern I can see is he suffers from dyslexia, yet he has been very productive nonetheless. He may even fall to the 3rd round. He talents are just what the defense needs to stop the run – put Sands old ass back on the bench and get some new young blood.

    I’m just salivating over the thought of Ellis in round 1 and Bryant in round 3 (if we can muster and 3rd round pick). Defense line problems virtually solved w/ 2 premier defenders in their own right.

    Bryant demands a double team allowing Ellis and possibly Burgess to be singled (likely chip blocked by RBs). Burgess, Ellis, Bryant, Kelly/Rich/Clemons. Should provided for pressure up the middle plus containment at RDE. Burgess’ run defense is a “?” mark.

  • La Milicia Negra

    —“Packers named DL Corey Williams their franchise player.
    This doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll sign Williams, unless he quickly puts pen to paper on the $6,363,000 offer. GM Ted Thompson will likely work to deal Williams before that happens. Williams can play end and tackle, and with 14 sacks 2006-2007, should at least bring back a second-round pick.
    Feb. 20 – 6:02 p.m. ET”—

  • tom flores


    waiting or expecting anyone surprising us next year is a risk we can’t afford…it’s time to go about rebuilding in an aggressive manner with one eye on the cap and another on our own roster…

    there are plenty of areas we can improve with a lateral cap move in the FA marketplace. We have a handful of underperforming guys that we can trade or waive and free up space to sign new FA’s to take their spot or resign some of our own FAs that deserve another year here in Silver and Black

  • raiderwill1980


    This is why drafting is so important, you can’t depend on free agent contracts ending and signing players, teams are getting too smart with the cap to lose guys they want. I suppose a 2nd round pick for williams isn’t terrible, but with the needs we have, and the current shortage of picks, that just takes away options from us. I’ve straddled the fence all offseason, but it’s crystal clear to me now. It’s imperative we draft a defensive lineman in the first round

  • tom flores


    if we offer Williams a contract and GB matches…we will have to give up two number 1 draft picks…no player in FA is worth that price !!!

  • M

    Agreed, Mr Flores, an establshed player could be of great help. Justin Smith for one. As far as safety, I have not seen one available in FA worthy of spending on. Linebacker? Yeah, Lance Briggs, but that’ll be an enormous mortgage. Derek Smith, if he can still bring it would be nice for a couple of years. 33 though.

  • La Milicia Negra

    Tom Flores…

    do you think i suggest a player everytime i post they have been tagged?

    I post’em here because then we can take themout of our considerations and talks here on the block…

    I simply posted it as an information, thats why it is in qoutes

  • tom flores

    Terrapin and Raiderwill

    I agree…we HAVE to take more than one D Lineman in the draft…using our number 3 or 4 pick would be fine with me and most likely to occur…but I wish we could trade down and pick up more picks along the way to beef up our LB and SS positions.

    If we only dropped down to say number 8 or 9 we woudl still get a top 3 or 4 D Lineman plus two very high second round picks along the way from moving down from number 3 or 4…

    I guess that would be too much to hope for…

  • raiderwill1980

    they can also rescind the tag and trade him for whatever value they get, like the champ bailey and clinton portis trade. denver did not give up 2 first round picks, and champ was franchised that year

  • tom flores

    D Smith is still tackling over a hundred a year…why not give him a two year contract ??? At the very least we get a short term fix at that position



  • M

    La Milicia Negra, how in the hell did you come to be so knowledgeable about futbol americano and the Raiders in particular? It really is quite impressive.

  • tom flores


    I am just stating the obvious…I would LOVE to have Williams on our D line are you kidding me??? He was on my short list…the franchise tag just makes it more expensive and defintely more complicated…I dont think we can afford to give up a single draft pick right now and we should be looking to acquire picks…on that note GB could use an extra RB..why not throw LJ into a trade offer for Williams ???

  • M

    Trading down requires someone who is willing to give up a lot for supposedly a singular player who is the missing piece to a puzzle for that team. Ain’t no tradin’ down ‘thout that.

  • Quagmire’d

    Post 325 and 326- HILARIOUS!!! At work and can’t stop laughing out loud. Uh-oh, drawing attention to myself…here comes the MAN.

  • Quagmire’d

    Oops, meant 336.

  • stretch

    i just heard NA was tagged with the exclusive franchise tag on sirius 124.

  • M

    Throw in LJ to pay for Fabian’s bond and next round of drinks. Man, Norv did not hit a solid note with that hire.

  • tom flores

    btw M

    we do have salary cap space this year…and could free up a bit more if we waive a few guys that are overpaid underperformers…I think Briggs is gonna want what SF paid last year…8 x 8M….but I think he si worth it…Sapp made 10M in 06….Daunte 8M last year…

    both are gone and if we get rid of LJ thats another 4M
    trimmed off the roster…

  • tom flores

    someone mentioned that fact that no one reports on Raiders news ….that is so true…and if they do report it…well lets just say its innacurate at best…like the Fargas deal listed as a one year deal…as opposed to a 3 year deal…

    what is really disconcerting about this is that it seems to be an organized effort to keep FA’s from coming here…I really am starting to believe there is a conspiracy against Al Davis and the Raiders organization in the press and NFL

  • M

    Damn. Culpepper made 8 mil. last year? That’s criminal!

  • Don’t none of you poots, talk about Ms. Milano. She was a hit since the Tony Danza days.

  • La Milicia Negra


    thanks to some stupid americans trying to teach a even stupider 10 year old Dane! business men staying at my Fathers when they were in Denmark, my father was a member of Lions INT.

    One particular, a Texan, I was about 12, he was a Raider FAN, which he explained was cool when you came from Texas – I just liked the colors and the Logo – Then they were MY TEAM!!

    And believe it or not a ‘Up With People’ teached me of the nastiness of Raider D!

    Then Later i bought books, got people I knew in the US to send me tapes and so on – later with the Internet it was easy.

    But mostly the american sites was slow and oldfashioned which was a real dud. Now almost 10 years after I started follow the raiders on the net it finally suits most my needs. I’ve watched 3 games at the same time on laptops plus the game in TV each game. So My needs this year have been fulfilled, now I just cant wait for the Draft, well combine first I guess…

  • M

    Believe it Mr. Flores, believe it. As about 9 people own every damn thing on this planet they do not appreciate when anyone bucks their system. They prefer nice compliant billionaires like R. Kraft and overt cheats like Clemens and Belichump to anyone who rocks the boat.

  • Rob Ryan’s Pickled Liver

    Poor Draft choices have really crippled this team of late…

    Philip Buchanon
    Napolean Harris
    Doug Jolley
    Robert Gallery
    Jake Grove
    Fabian Washington
    Derrick Gibson
    Michael Huff

    Terrible, given their draft positions

  • lmn

    I need a cigarette after reading that dyslexia!!

    What were you trying to say?

  • M

    La Milicia Negra, thanks for the tale of how you came to be in the Raider Nation.

  • La Milicia Negra


    “how in the hell did you come to be so knowledgeable about futbol americano and the Raiders in particular? It really is quite impressive.”

    ok let me sum it up in a paperback issue…

    Football is cool, Raiders a tough and i like the colors and logo…

  • tom flores

    someone please send me a link to read what happened to Fabian….


  • lmn

    You must have snuck across that countries border, where ever you are!

  • La Milicia Negra

    Tom Flores…

    post 210

  • RaiderDogg

    new blog gentleman

  • RaiderDogg

    a new blog gentleman

  • tom flores

    is the coin toss going to be tomorrow to decide our draft position ???

  • M

    The Ugly American shows its face.

  • daaraiders

    Who won the coin toss, us or Atlanta, it was supposed to happen today?

  • La Milicia Negra


    I dont know how to interpret your last post..

  • RIP Dan Birdwell

    The WR the Raiders will draft is Donnie Avery out of Houston — and they will be criticized for reaching when they take him in the second round.

    Book it.

  • tom flores

    has Chi town franchised Berrian yet…anyone ?

  • tom flores


    If Al is still running the draft you are probably right…but I will go one better…Raiders draft Flowers CB from VT in round one after trading down to number 8 or 9….instead of paying hefty number 3 or 4 overall signing bonuses…

  • tom flores

    instead of taking Ellis number 3 or 4 which would be the right move considering we have not been able to schedule any D-line FAs for work-outs…

    unless someone out there knows anything different…we will be sticking with Al Davis formula….

    speed on defense in 1st round or lump of coal O linemen !!!!

    which means we may even take a Long with our first pick…either one would fill a need…

  • Cshmnyslda

    KENNY PHILLIPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!