Potential targets for Raiders in free agency


By Jerry McDonald

A look at positions of need and players the Raiders might consider when free agency opens at 1 p.m. Tuesday:


The most expensive cornerbacks figure to be Aqib Talib (Patriots) and Sean Smith (Dolphins), with Talib having the most baggage in terms of character but also the most skill. Smith’s size (6-foot-1, 210 pounds) and ability probably put him out of general manager Reggie McKenzie’s price range. Keenan Lewis (Steelers) had an excellent season and is only 26. Brent Grimes (Falcons) is 29 and coming off a torn Achilles, so the Raiders might be reluctant to go in that direction. Greg Toler (Cardinals) is a year removed from an ACL injury and is a year younger than Grimes. Cary Williams (Ravens) held up in coverage on a championship team.

Defensive line

If the Raiders are looking to squeeze a last double-digit sacks season out of a veteran player, John Abraham (Falcons) and Dwight Freeney (Colts) are available, although both probably will be looking to go to a contender. Some names to keep in mind: Elvis Dumervil if Denver declines to pay him the $12 million he is due, and 49ers interior linemen Isaac Sopoaga and Ricky Jean Francois.


Paul Kruger (Ravens) is an option if the Raiders plan to play lots of 3-4 defense and surprise everyone by spending big. Erin Henderson (Vikings) is a two-down player who can stop the run. Lorenzo Alexander (Redskins) is a good locker-room guy and a special-teams standout. Shaun Phillips (Chargers) has been a thorn in the Raiders’ side for years as a pass rusher.

Offensive line

Phil Loadholt (Vikings) would fit nicely at right tackle in the Raiders’ gap and power blocking scheme, but he will be costly. Other players who could get snapped up quickly for big bucks include tackle Sebastian Vollmer (Patriots), tackle Jake Long (Dolphins), tackle Andre Smith (Bengals) and guard Andy Levitre (Bills). The second tier includes tackles Sam Baker (Falcons) and Jermon Bushrod (Saints). The Raiders have seen plenty of AFC West opponent Louis Vasquez (Chargers), who probably would come cheaper than fellow guard Brandon Moore (Jets).

Wide receiver

The Raiders have needed a smart, tough, productive veteran for a few years. Greg Jennings (Packers) has a history with McKenzie.

Tight end

Jared Cook (Titans) hasn’t had the kind of production to match his talent, and Tony Gonzalez (Falcons) reportedly wants to avoid training camp altogether not to mention make $7 million. Fred Davis (Redskins) is on the mend from a torn Achilles and could be had at a decent price. Delanie Walker (49ers) isn’t a move-the-chains receiver but is a punishing blocker, a special-teams player and a locker-room guy.

Running back

The Raiders need a reliable backup. Ahmad Bradshaw (Giants) has been productive in that role. Michael Turner (Falcons) is past his prime but could be a factor in a reduced role.


Presuming Carson Palmer returns, the Raiders are looking for a third quarterback to go along with Terrelle Pryor. Quarterbacks on the market include Jason Campbell (Bears), Tarvaris Jackson (Bills) and Drew Stanton (Colts).


Steve Corkran

  • NGRaiderfan

    790.RaidersAllday_LtsGeTit Says:
    March 12th, 2013 at 1:21 pm
    SBreport ‏@SBreport

    Generally speaking, free agents hold their highest value today. Price drops every day. One reason why McKenzie probably not making cuts yet.


    if they were going to cut a player, wouldn’t they want to do it sooner then so they would get signed for more money and in turn there wuld be more cap relief for the raiders.

    this statement was based on something i heard in the way of when a someone is cut and signed somewhere else, the number they were signed for is taken away from what the team that cut them owes to the player.

  • mcskinnnylegs

    bills release QB fitzpatrick.I think they have a deal in place to move up in the draft.raiders bills trade

  • NGRaiderfan

    poprox13 Says:
    March 12th, 2013 at 1:24 pm
    inonewordraider Says:
    March 12th, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Adam Schefter‏@AdamSchefter

    Bills announced they released QB Ryan Fitzpatrick.

    Expand Reply



    interesting. he’ll probably get some interest in the qb market, as a backup or to compete for a job somewhere like jax. that does make the bills a more viable trade partner for the #3. nice.


    lol … new post guys !!!

  • RaidersAllday_LtsGeTit

    I think he means.. Reggie has no pressure to cut anyone yet… CUZ they dont need the money yet to go after guys in FA.. just gonna wait

  • bcz24

    You act like signing 1 big free agent as soon as free agency opens is going to put us in the super bowl.

    Relax FA opened today, not closed. Who cares if we aren’t connect to every FA on the market.

  • NGRaiderfan

    805.RaidersAllday_LtsGeTit Says:
    March 12th, 2013 at 1:26 pm
    I think he means.. Reggie has no pressure to cut anyone yet… CUZ they dont need the money yet to go after guys in FA.. just gonna wait


    o fa sho that makes sense. don’t want to wait too long though. got to at least be talkig to ppl

  • NGRaiderfan

    796.Purvisman/Intrepid/Eternal Optimist Says:
    March 12th, 2013 at 1:23 pm
    Mike Mitchell ‏@MikeMitchell34

    Here’s an interesting article… http://gnb.scout.com/2/1273404.html
    Retweeted by Steve Corkran


    interesting article on mitchell. He would be nice,if we didnt have branch in a big contract. him and branch are essentially the same. but you don’t want your safeties to be the same u want them to be different. at least one has to be good against the pass. right now i’m not sure we have any.

  • shutdown

    inonewordraider Says:
    March 12th, 2013 at 12:03 pm
    shutdown Says:

    March 12th, 2013 at 12:01 pm
    Damn, people.

    If I’m Anquon Boudin, what the hell do I want with the Oakland Raiders, huh? There are over 30 other teams out there!

    You guys have your faces brains planted up your asses.

    inonewordraider says:
    “since when can i guy choose where he get’s traded too?”


    That’s not the point. RM is trying to build a culture here, a culture the makes good players want to come here, culture that doesn’t reward loafers, one that rewards guys who strive.

    By trading Boldin to a team like the Niners, they’ve rewarded a guy who’s been great and been a team player while still getting something for him in return and by dumping his salary.

    Players take note of this kind of thing when becoming free agents, deciding among many suitors with whom to go. Down the road, when we DO have a core of good players, this kind of history of a team (not trading a good player to a dirtball team) can pay off when FAs think about what kind of an org. Oakland is.

    If we were a player away from being challengers, then yeah, you hope for a guy like Boldin, but he isn’t going to make the difference.

    I have no idea if he were to have been traded to us, if he’d have retired or come. I guess that would depend on how badly he still wanted to play NFL ball and how badly he still wanted an NFL paycheck, but you couldn’t blame him for wanting the team he just led to a Super Bowl win to trade him to another contender in his twilight years. Other players do take notice of such things.

  • alzadoX

    NGRaiderfan Says:
    March 12th, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    doe anyone have a stat on how many DE/OLB wre signed as big free agents and actually lived up to the signing? it would be interesting, I already know of a couple that haven’t. can’t think of any that have.



  • Joe Snaidauf

    Saturday Night Special?