JaMarcus Russell Cut: Raiders Fans Should Wish Him Well

I am not a JaMarcus Russell apologist.

His performance on the field and demeanor off it all expressed a lethargy that has cost the Raiders $39 million over three seasons, and many profanities in my home.

Time and time again, myself and other fans felt the tangible disgust that came with every Russell interception, sack, and poor play.

So, when I heard the news that Russell was officially released by the Raiders, my reaction should have been a jump for joy, loud cheering, and a celebration beer. Instead, it was a blank stare, an indifferent look that would even make Russell wonder what was going on in my head.

With a few hours to digest things, now I feel a bit of pity for him.

Although it was only three years into the enigma that was Russell, most people would say this move was long overdue. The first overall pick in the 2007 draft, Russell was widely considered to be the top quarterback prospect.

Comparisons to Elway came regularly because of his amazing arm.

A firm believer of creating a team from the inside out, I wanted the Raiders to draft Joe Thomas. Now Russell is a free agent and a two-week food binge away from being of comparable size to Thomas.

For a moment, let's play the blame game.


Blame It on Russell

Russell made his first impression on the Raiders and fans by holding out for more than six weeks to get a six-year, $61 million contract. Due to the hold-out, he was vastly behind the learning curve and was never effective his first year.

His second year essentially became his rookie year and was filled with inconsistent play. His work ethic became the main topic of discussion, and Russell's play seemed to confirm all the questions. He looked noticeably larger, and not in a good way that could fit a supposedly 260-pound frame.

His third year, with a new full-time head coach and new QB coach, Russ...

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