Cut or Keep: Possible 2018 Raider Cap Casualties

Take a look as brings you some possible cap casualties for the Raiders in 2018. The NFL is an ever-changing business. Players and coaches are constantly being cut and fired. This has already begun to happen with the Oakland Raiders. Former head coach Jack Del Rio was relieved of his duties quickly after the ending of an underwhelming 2017 campaign.

With the way the season turned out, it can be assumed some players will suffer a similar fate to Del Rio. Here are five Raiders who could be on the chopping block.

Bruce Irvin

Through 10 games, Bruce Irvin appeared destined to be cut at the end of the 2017 season. In the latter half of the season, however, Irvin was dominant.

The switch from Ken Norton Jr. to John Pagano at defensive coordinator seemingly boosted Irvin’s play. He had 5.5 sacks in six games with Pagano, as opposed to 2.5 in 10 games under Norton. Like most contracts on the Raiders roster, Reggie McKenzie crafted Bruce Irvin’s contract to be quite easy to get out of. Irvin has a cap hit of just over 8 million dollars in 2018 and just over 9 million in 2019 with no dead money remaining on the contract if Irvin is cut. With Irvin’s recent uptick in play, he should be safe for at least another year in the Silver and Black. KEEP

Sean Smith

Sean Smith is another guy who looked doomed until John Pagano took over the defense. Smith was a backup for most of the 2017 season. The last few games of the season, however, Smith looked eerily similar to the guy he once was in Kansas City.

The 30-year old cornerback finished with a decent 73.2 grade by PFF. He also finished the season with two of the Oakland’s five interceptions, but they were both gifts from Dak Prescott. Smith’s cap hit is 8.5 million dollars in 2017.This money could go towards retaining unrestricted free agents T.J. Carrie and NaVorro Bowman. Unfortunately, Smith may have done too little too late unless the Raiders bring in another defensive coordinator who loves tall corners as much as the last regime. Unless Smith is willing to take a serious pay cut, he will likely be let go. Cut.

David Amerson

Poor David Amerson just couldn’t stay healthy in 2017. Plus, in the six games, he did play, he wasn’t very good. He surrendered a 156.3 passer rating when targeted this year, according to PFF.

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Amerson never played with Pagano calling the plays on defense, though. He could be another guy whose play improves under a better defensive coordinator. Amerson’s cap hit isn’t very big, only 6 million, in 2018. That cap hit jumps to 7.5 million in 2019. David Amerson has been a very good corner in the past and he is only 26 years of age. Amerson should get a chance to stay on the roster in 2018. KEEP

Michael Crabtree

This was not a good year for Raider receivers. The unit as a whole didn’t live up to the lofty expectations. Crabtree only had 58 receptions and 618 yards.

Throughout the season, it was still clear Crabtree was the “go-to guy.” Whenever the Raiders needed a big conversion or a game-winning touchdown “number 15” was still the man. Crabtree’s demeanor lends himself perfectly to that role. He appears to want the ball more in big spots than teammate Amari Cooper. However, Crabtree’s cap hit of over 7.6 million dollars in 2018 will probably be his undoing. That coupled with the rumors of him being let go, his sometimes questionable attitude, and him seemingly losing what is left of his speed appear to signal the end of Crabtree in Silver and Black. Thanks for the great memories if this is the end. Cut.

Seth Roberts

Seth Roberts has caught some big passes in his career. He has also dropped a heck of a lot of passes in his career. He also disappeared for large parts of 2017. Roberts finished the year with 43 receptions for 455 yards and a single touchdown. These are not good numbers for a slot receiver.

Roberts doesn’t have the hands of a slot receiver. He rarely catches the ball cleanly and has a nasty habit of fumbling the football. He also isn’t involved in special teams. The Raiders can save over 2 million in 2018 by cutting him. That isn’t a major savings but Roberts had a PFF grade of 42.2 in 2017, that’s poor. The Raiders should look to draft a receiver and potentially sign one of the many available in free agency. Cut.

*All contract info courtesy of Spotrac

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