Will Big Names Be on the Oakland Raiders Free-Agency Shopping List?

Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis isn’t wiping his rear with Benjamin Franklin’s face like some other owners, but don’t let his frugality fool you. The Raiders have the resources to bring in players this offseason.

The Raiders also must spend. Not only would a spending spree improve a roster in much need of a talent infusion, but the collective-bargaining agreement requires all teams to spend 89 percent of the salary cap in cash over a four-year period from 2013-2016, and the Raiders aren’t even close.

No team in the league has less money committed to its 2015 roster at this point, and only one team has less committed to players in 2016. That’s before cutting some of the dead weight. The only question at this point will be if general manager Reggie McKenzie is giving out huge contracts to big-name free agents or overpaying aging veterans like last season.

Due to rollover from prior years and dead money, the Jacksonville Jaguars actually have more space under the salary cap, but the Raiders still have about $52 million in cap space. By cutting two or three veterans, the Raiders can have upwards of $60 million in space.


Is a Spending Spree on the Way?

One of the things the Raiders must do over the next two seasons is make sure they get to the salary floor. Otherwise, they will be sending checks to every player on the team over that period for the difference. It’s an accounting nightmare.

Estimates for the 2016 cap range from $150-160 million, but in this case, the Raiders are going to want to estimate on the high side. That means that the Raiders will have to spend about $180 million in cash over the next two seasons to meet the obligation.

Paying Ndamukong Suh nearly $20 million per year would be no sweat. Marshawn Lynch $10 million for two years would be no problem at all. That would still leave around $120 million t...

About the Author