Wilson latest to go from ’08 spending spree


The Raiders search for a strong safety continues.

A little more than a year after winning a championship with the New York Giants and cashing in with a lucrative free agent contract with the Raiders, Gibril Wilson is looking for a job.

Wilson, along with wide receiver Ronald Curry and defensive end Kalimba Edwards, were released Friday as the Raiders began to clear the books for the signings of Nnamdi Asomugha, Shane Lechler and the still-unnannounced signing of Chris Johnson.

The Raiders must be at $123 million when free agency begins Feb. 27, and were reportedly $8 million under before the signings of Asomugha, Lechler and Johnson.

A team official confirmed the moves, which were listed as transactions on Raiders.com, with no comment.

In all, the cuts cleared $6.2 million in salary cap space.

Wilson was due a $2.5 million salary and had a pending roster bonus of $4.5 million. With a salary cap figure of $8.4 million and $7 million in pro-rated bonus money from his original signing bonus of $8.4 million, it the release cleared $1.4 million in cap space but will mean $7 million in dead money under the cap.

Curry, due $3.5 million in salary, had a $4.1 cap figure and $1.8 million of pro-rated bonus money for a $2.3 million savings.

Edwards, with a cap figure just under $3.2 million with $697,500 in bonus pro-ration, clears another $2.5 million from under the cap.

The Wilson dump is the latest black mark on last year’s offseason spending spree, which included huge deals with Tommy Kelly, trade acquisition DeAngelo Hall and wide receiver Javon Walker.

Wilson finished the season with 129 tackles, second on the team to Kirk Morrison, withfour passes defensed, two interceptions and 1.5 sacks.

Despite the numbers, he wasn’t nearly the in-the-box force the Raiders had hoped for when they signed him early in free agency.

Wilson, during the first quarter of the season, called playing for the Raiders a “soap opera” as the Lane Kiffin-Al Davis feud dominated the news. It’s conceivable the Raiders offered Wilson a chance to stay at reduced rate, much as they did LaMont Jordan in 2007.

Curry’s release comes as no surprise, and in fact he was told days ago a release would be forthcoming.

Edwards started 11 games for the Raiders after arriving as a free agent from the Detroit Lions. He finished with five sacks, but had none in the last eight games, missing the last two because of injury.

For now, tackle Kwame Harris, another 2007 acquisition, remains on the roster. Should the Raiders cut Harris, it would represent an $7.2 million savings against the salary cap.


Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • # JHill Says:
    February 22nd, 2009 at 2:22 pm

    Atl – we had negative yards and zero first downs in the first half. Our OC got benched that game, not our DTs. Turner got the ball 31 times that day, and yeah NO ONE showed up for that game.

    Carolina – Holding a team to 17 points is not a bad game. Williams rushed for 140 yds on 20 carries, but 70 of them came on one TD run.

    KC Held Johnson to 92 yds on 24 carries. Thigpen added 50 yds scrambling.

    NE – that game was over when it was 21 to nothing with 3 min left in the 1st QTR. Matt Cassell killed us in his first game back from his dad passing, not RBs. Jordan had 100 yds in the 2nd half when the game was long decided.


    There ya go. Still don’t see how an upgrade at DT helps any of these outcomes.

    And if you go and watch these games you will see exactly what I am talking about short and medium timing routes which were used to negate our pass rush and did for the most part. Also as Jhill notes, Thigpen scrambling for 50 yards and a couple of crucial third down conversions were the responsibility of the LB’s and safeties NOT the DL. And if you also remember, late in the KC game with us leading, Gabril drops a sure INT that hits him right in the mits. That right there would have won that game.

  • Buttholeprick

    I know a lot of you idiots out there don’t know much about the Raider orginization. But trust me fools I do. I know more people in the chain of command than you idiots know people. Trust me.

  • blackdeath29

    oakglenn cushing has zero chance to play end in the pros .ZERO!maualuga will impact from day 1.

  • Buttholeprick

    that all makes sense S&B but how ’bout we first se what the issues were. It’s hard to believe it’s not something going on that’s very serious. So far we don’t know what that is but to have a talent o his ability drop can’t hurt.

    I don’t complain when I get a gift. You do your own research on the kid because what’s bad for someone else may be good for you.

    But you idiots know that all my research is good. Twice as good as any research you idiots do. Because I know people in high places and you idiots don’t know squat.

  • Our 2nd round pick?.

    Maryland WR Darrius Heyward-Bey, 6’2, 210, 4.3 forty.

    Best size-speed ratio in the Draft, fastest 40 yard time and top 10 in vertical jump, broad jump and bench press.

    “One of the most impressive players on the field in the morning session was Maryland WR Darrius Heyward-Bey.

    Scouts were impressed but not altogether surprised by his 4.30-second 40 yard dash, the fastest recorded this year.

    It was his improved fluidity and consistency of his route-running and secure hands that really caught their attention”.

    The last paragraph is exactly what I wanted to hear about this guy.

  • Bob, Heyward-Bey wont last that long with that showing. He’ll go in the top 20.

  • # S&B (The Raiders select BJ Raji, DT Boston College) Says:
    February 22nd, 2009 at 2:23 pm

    These guys maybe young, but they are being paid grown men money. Andre has no excuse. Look, every other “kid” graduating school has professional job interviews that have a lot more stress then running around with a football and pay a lot less.

    If a kid can’t get ready for the combine, what they heck is going to happen during the off-season.

    Spend a 2nd or 3rd round pick on a kid with maturity issues like this. Not a 1st round pick, let alone a top 10

    One thing that most of you probably have never had experience with is the whole college recruiting scene. Imagine that YOU are a top collegiate prospect and you have Charlie Weis the Head Coach of Notre Dame in your living room talking to your parents while, Nick Saban the Head Coach of Alabama is dressed in a $4000 Armani suit waiting in your parlor, and Phil Fulmer the HC of the Univesity of Tennessee is in a car waiting in the driveway. To talk to YOU. Just imagine that for one second. And all of that is NOTHING compared to what is going on right now with some of these prospects.

    Now they can legally start talking to agents. Their friends want them to use this guy, their family wants them to use another guy, their coaches a different guy, their former team mates in the league a different guy, and every one is telling them something different. Go to the combine, don’t go to the combine, go to the combine but don’t run or lift, have your own pro day on your terms. It has to be a bit overwhelming especially for a kid just past his teens or for a kid who has no family or serious established friends he can trust. That is not his fault.

  • blackdeath29

    bob marley your right as soon as heyward-bey ran that 4.3 in the draft he became the raiders 2nd round pick but i don`t agree. it`s not my call.i like ron brace.

  • More on Heyward-Bey…

    “Darrius Heyward-Bey’s reputation preceded him this week in Indianapolis, where the NFL scouting combine will mint fresh millionaires and unmask impostors for it’s April draft.

    Scouts already know Maryland’s mercurial wide receiver is lightning in a bottle, a touchdown waiting to happen, that he has tantalizing size, long arms and extraordinary athleticism.

    They also know he is not a polished receiver, that he can be inconsistent catching the ball, and that he occasionally would disappear from the Terps’ offense last season as a junior.

    What they don’t know – at least yet – is how his unique combination of skills will translate in the NFL. But early draft projections have him taken in the first round or, at worst, at the top of the second.

    Mike Mayock, a draft analyst for the NFL Network, is among those intrigued with Heyward-Bey’s talent. When he watches tapes, Mayock sees the explosiveness that generated eight plays of 50 or more yards in three seasons at Maryland.

    “You look at his combination of height, weight and speed, and you want to believe he’s a top 10 pick,” Mayock said. “At other times, it doesn’t look like he catches the ball naturally”.

    “I feel like I need to do more [film study] on him. Watching him makes me want to know more about him.”

    Coach Ralph Friedgen gave Heyward-Bey his blessing in early January when the soon-to-be 22-year-old decided to forgo his senior year at Maryland for the NFL.

    “If he runs a slow time [at Indianapolis], he’ll still be faster than most of the guys running,” Friedgen said. “He never ran slower than 4.2 for me. And it doesn’t look like he’s running [hard].”

    Heyward-Bey was a world-class sprinter at McDonogh, where he ran track, played basketball and debuted in football as a freshman. In fact, football was the only sport he didn’t play growing up in Silver Spring, where he was a basketball prodigy of some renown.

    But Dom D’Amico, McDonogh’s football coach, could see the long-term potential in Heyward-Bey, even if he was uncomfortable in pads at first.

    “He was as raw as you could get,” D’Amico said. “But you always saw something special in him. … His speed is NFL-caliber. His demeanor and how hard he works, those are the things that make you want to help him develop. You can’t get a kid with better character.”

    Heyward-Bey’s speed, if not his ultimate career direction, was evident from the beginning. By the end of his junior year at McDonogh, he decided football was his destination, even though he was a first-team All-American in track in the indoor 60 meters.

    He chose Maryland and football over LSU, track and the Olympics. Redshirted his freshman year, he served notice he was a player to watch in 2006 when he caught touchdown passes of 96 and 65 yards in a 14-13 victory over Miami.

    Mel Kiper Jr., an ESPN draft analyst and a Baltimore native, said the Terps “didn’t make a concerted effort to get him the ball enough. He’s got to get it six to eight times a game.”

    Friedgen said defenses forced the Terps away from Heyward-Bey.

    Still, when told of Mayock’s assertion that Heyward-Bey did not catch the ball naturally, Friedgen said: “His technique has got to be better. Darrius knows that.”

    Ben Dogra, who helps represent Heyward-Bey at CAA, knows there are players coming out with better statistics. But he doesn’t think anyone is coming out with better potential.

    “He’s a young player,” Dogra said. “They’ll have to project him. You’re not going to take him in the first round based on pure numbers”.

    “His [college] production is a function of the offense, a function of him developing. He started football at a later age. He’s still learning it. In two or three years, with better coaching, nobody knows how good he can be.”

    From baltimoresun.com

  • # blackdeath29 Says:
    February 22nd, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    oakglenn cushing has zero chance to play end in the pros .ZERO!maualuga will impact from day 1.

    Ooooookayy. Whatever.

  • Charlie

    Please name a good defense that does not have an imposing defensive line. Have you forgotten that a defensive line is also supposed to rush the passer.
    Rarely does anyone call a max protect against us because we can not rush the passer. They run five man routes with four seconds to throw and you blame the secondary?

    We have cast offs and day two picks on the line and you want to blame coaches?(Burgess was let go by Philly beacuse of injury problems)

    I understand that a good Oline will help the defense but thirty first against the run last year and you are blaming linebackers and the secondary?

    You have got to watch more games.

  • blackdeath29

    February 22nd, 2009 at 2:59 pm
    # blackdeath29 Says:
    February 22nd, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    oakglenn cushing has zero chance to play end in the pros .ZERO!maualuga will impact from day 1.

    Ooooookayy. Whatever.
    i`m not trying to argue with you.their both good players.i just know more about maualuga than most.EUREKA HIGH SCHOOL!

  • Actually Blackdeath my fault totally. I read too fast and didn’t see the word end. So I thought you were saying Cushing has zero chance to play in the pros. My fault totally! Sorry.

  • lefty12

    Charlie-most teams got their passing success against us with short,quick crossing patterns,not passes thrown down the field.the better Scott got as the year went along,the less time opposing QBs had to throw.our DTs were always double teamed,which is what you want.

  • I just reread # 492 and # 797. Macklin possibly at seven. However the worst run D for the last 6 years or so shows that teams just ram it down our throat. And yes we need O line help real bad. Can we get peppers? Don’t see Lewis coming. The problem with taking O or D line help that high (# 7) when maybe we can draft 2 thru 6 for comparable talent & less cost. Please no porter or TO as FA. In the last 10 years, how many stud O or D line talent was taken by any team drafting 1-7? JUST A QUESTION!
    PS I am happy we keep Shane & NHANE!!!!

  • Charlie


    The point is watch how many of those patterns included five receivers. The passes you are alluding to were not three step drops. The only way we get close to the QB is with a blitz.
    It is a compromised scheme before the ball is snapped because the offensive coordinator knows we can not bring pressure without a blitz.

  • blackdeath29

    no problem oak glenn .i just want the raiders to draft the new rey-rey of the nfl.

  • # blackdeath29 Says:
    February 22nd, 2009 at 3:27 pm

    no problem oak glenn .i just want the raiders to draft the new rey-rey of the nfl.

    You are certainly not alone in that blackdeath!

  • edward teach

    I agree with everyone that says we need to draft to improve the lines. Obviously JR is the franchise and I’m confident that protecting him and blocking for MBush and Dmac will be a priority come draft day.

    What I see in here, though, is that some are forgetting that we have more than just a first round pick. This is a very deep draft, by all accounts, for offensive linemen and our head coach and O-line coach are very accomplished and experienced in that area. Cable himself has said repeatedly that (and I’m paraphrasing here) you don’t have to be a top prospect to become a good lineman in this league. Any doubts about him backing that up should be alleviated by the improvement of our existing line under his tenure.

    Our O-line gave up 39 sacks last year; not terrible when you look at it closely. How many of those sacks did we give up because JR was basically a rookie QB? How much improvement did we see in that area after Mario took over at LT and Cable got things running the way he wanted them to?

    I’m going by the last three games here because that’s when Cable says that the team really started to gel and get an idea of what he wanted them to do; here is idea of how our O-line performed during that stretch:

    New England…
    117 yards rushing / 4.3 average yards per carry
    2 sacks in 33 pass attempts

    139 yards rushing / 4.1 average yards per carry
    1 sack in 25 pass attempts

    Tampa Bay…
    192 yards rushing / 5.5 yards per carry
    1 sack in 21 pass attempts

    The numbers don’t lie. It’s not as bad as some would have us believe. Run defense is another story, of course. We’ll have to see how the coaches evaluate that and react to it come draft day, but that’s another topic.

  • lefty12

    Charlie-that is why we need better play from our DEs and LBs.i think everyone agrees we could get better players at DT,but we also have other needs that are more pressing.and as if Jhill says,we can get much better by taking say Rey Rey 1st and Brace in the 2nd-in MY OPINION-that is a better way to go.i also am not that sold that Raji will be THAT great of a player.

  • blackdeath29

    edward teach you sound like someone who want`s to go defense in the first round.

  • lefty12

    a player we should probably keep an eye on is Thomas-WR-ASU.built like TO and i believe he ran a 4.3 today.

  • diablored

    i miss stu schwiegert . he was underrated

  • Mamba Negra

    From Profootballtalk

    Posted by Mike Florio on February 22, 2009, 5:10 p.m.

    After cutting cornerback DeAngelo Hall in the middle of the 2008 season and recently sending safety Gibril Wilson packing, the Oakland Raiders could soon complete the trifecta when it comes to admitting error with its prized offseason acquisitions from a year ago.

    According to Adam Schefter of NFL Network, the Raiders might soon release receiver Javon Walker.

    Walker, per Schefter, is due to pocket a $5 million roster bonus on March 3. The Raiders could sever ties with him in order to avoid having to cut the check.

    If they do, Schefter says that Walker will still count for a whopping $14.16 million against the salary cap in 2009.

    The net dead money, however, would be far lower than that, since if Walker stays he’ll at least count $9 million against the cap this year, based on the $5 million bonus and his $4 million salary. The proration from his 2008 signing bonus would undoubtedly push the number over $10 million.

    Moreover, the Raiders would save $9 million in real dollars by cutting Walker.

    Last season, Walker appeared in only eight games, and caught only 15 passes for 196 yards and a touchdown. At one point in the preseason, Walker reportedly considered retiring and paying back his bonus money.

    In hindsight, the Raiders should have taken him up on his offer.

  • diablored

    yeah . hope we draft rey maualuga

  • Left I think you’re talking about Mike Thomas from Arizona. He’s closer to 5’11” 200 but ran a good 40 time. He’s a player along with Mike Wallace from Ole’ Miss. Very similar players with great speed and versatility.

  • diablored

    shiit , why dont he retire now? save management hella money .

  • edward teach

    Blackdeath29…. (that’s a great handle, by the way)… I am actually in favor of taking Crabtree with the 7th pick. He’s about as much of a lock as anyone in the draft and I just don’t see anyone on defense other than Curry from Wake Forest that’s worthy of being chosen that high. It would take a miracle for him to be there at 7, though.

    People will talk about our young guys and the fact that Walker and Carter will be back, and Arman Shields is the real deal, etc. I respect that sentiment, I just don’t agree that it makes us solid at that position. Carter and Walker are both damaged goods and (if they make the opening day roster) are way more vulnerable to career-ending injuries than we should be comfortable with. Shields, I don’t think, has ever caught a regular season pass in the NFL. Which leaves us with JLH and Chaz. Not enough, in my view, to go into the season with when we might have the oppportunity to grab the next really good one in this year’s draft.

    We drafted JR for a reason, and hired Ted Tollner to run the passing game. Paul Hackett is one of the most repected QB coaches in the business. Crabtree is a dynamic player and in my view would help to take that part of our offense to a whole new level.

  • lefty12

    Priest-i do believe that’s who i am talking about.i didn’t watch a whole lot today,but did see him run the 40 and a drill.the announcers seemed to be talking him up.to be honest,i won’t be surprised if we take Crabtree since he might fall now.not my choice,but as always,whomever we pick i’ll support.as i always say-the players come and go,the uniform stays the same.i support the uniform.

  • Bob Marley Says:
    February 22nd, 2009 at 2:49 pm

    Our 2nd round pick?.

    Maryland WR Darrius Heyward-Bey, 6′2, 210, 4.3 forty.

    Best size-speed ratio in the Draft, fastest 40 yard time and top 10 in vertical jump, broad jump and bench press.
    Just the sort of spreadsheet credentials that makes Davis go Kapow!

  • Oakglenn, it is nice to see people talking Raider football. But I don’t know if I’d call Raider football “real” football. Have you observed the Raiders’ results over the past 6 years?

  • Al Davis

    maddenraider, how does my azz taste?

  • LOL. Hey Marley, what’s Darrius Heyward-Bey’s body fat percentage, while we’re at it? How about his blood type?

    I remember Howie Long talking about when he was drafted by the Raiders, there was no technical talk about size, speed, agility. They just gave him a helmet and told him to get out there, because they already knew he was a football player. Ahh, the Ron Wolf Raider days.

  • Al Davis, how does my azz taste?

  • Guy’s I love Crabtree’s talent and would love to have that talent. I just don’t feel we need a WR that high. But i felt the same way about DMC last year. Crabtree is every bit as talented as DMC at his position IMO.

    My point is I want as many very talented players as possible available when we pick that makes a lot of things possible as well as trades. So please Andre Smith drop and Crabtree drop to #7 and I hope some sucker gives us the store to get one.

  • Al Davis

    last time I looked I own the AFC West. maddenraider, how does my ass taste?

  • Old man…

    Yeah, but Casserly was on NFL Network 5 minutes ago and said that Heyward-Bey just cemented his status as a 1st round pick, showed good hands and his speed translated well into his route-running.

  • Draft Crabtree.

  • Hope we hear soon that walker got cut,..who cares about “dead money”,…there is no true salary cap anyway, never has been,..a device made up by the owners to use to get rid of high priced players. …no team has EVER gotten rid of a player because they couldnt fit him in under the cap….goodbye walker.

  • cya later, im watching nascar.

  • That’s what I meant BOB a kid with that skill level no way he last into the 2nd rnd unless extenuating circumstances. Attitude, drugs…etc;

    But these issues with Crabtree and Smith are good news for us because we’re at #7 if both drop then hopfully both QB’s jump into the top 6. Then we will be in fat city. The phone will be ringing…

  • # Bob Marley Says:
    February 22nd, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    Old man…

    Yeah, but Casserly was on NFL Network 5 minutes ago and said that Heyward-Bey just cemented his status as a 1st round pick, showed good hands and his speed translated well into his route-running.
    I’m all for anything that makes the Raiders better. I’m not a draftnik myself. But I know you are.

    I’m just saying he has all the Davis goodies. Tell me about his desire.

  • lefty12

    Priest-i like your thinking on this one.Crabtree and Smith drop-someone loves them and we get to reap the benefits.

  • lefty12

    although Davis hasn’t done it before(trade down out of the top 10) it would really be to our advantage if someone gave us an offer we couldn’t refuse.

  • Left I just want to pick up an additional pick and drop to say 11 and still get Rey Rey. That’s what I want but Big Al doesn’t trade down that often because he wants to ROB teams and they find better deals than what he’s giving them. It has nothing to do with “Al Davis never trades down”. There are just players that he wants more than what the other team is willing to give HIM to move up.

    He does get caught falling in love with certain players (DMC) where maybe he should see what’s left more. Great talent intoxicates him too often.

  • The combine gets great tomorrow, the best players in the draft hit the field tomorrow.

  • darkknight01

    Don’t be naive and judge Andre Smith too soon people….

    Lets wait until we see his Pro Day workouts before judging him.

    It seems the Raiders will have their choice between Crabtree, Andre Smith, Maualuga and maaaaaybe Orakpo or Raji.

    There are plenty of solid WR’s who will be there in round 2 like Britt and maybe Nicks. Plenty of DT’s in round 3 like Taylor or Moala.

    Right now I’m leaning on Crabtree, Andre Smith, Maualuga or Orakpo with that #7 in no particular order. Raji weighed in at 337 at the combine and was 334 at the senior bowl?? Too fat for me and he will get tired….

  • Charlie

    I guess I am trying to understand the downside of drafting OT,DT and DE on day one and pick a WR in round 4.
    I have never seen a first round WR turn a bad team into a good one. Look at the Cardinals. They have had enormous WR talent but did not start to win until Whisenhunt came out and started to focus on line play.
    Clearly Warner was crucial but my point is great WR do not make that much of a difference in the WIN column.They need a HUGE supporting cast to make a difference. We do not have the supporting cast ranking 31st against the rush and starting a 32 y/o RT that was brought in as a back up.
    I just do not see how a Crabtree or Maclin as a rookie will be that much better than our young guys.

  • BHP…864

    Yeah, you’re right, he’s definitely a combine “winner” or “riser” as they like to call them.

  • edward teach

    Regarding trading down; not sure that Al would do it, and others have indicated his history with that.

    What wouldn’t surprise me is our trading a high pick next year to one of the elite teams in order to get an additional first rounder this year, or trading a combination to someone to get an additional pick in the second.