The Las Vegas Raiders are taking things very seriously in regards to opening up cap space.
First, they released Tyrell Williams. Then, they released Gabe Jackson. Now they’ve decided to make another big move in an effort to open some cap space. According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Raiders are releasing starting left guard Richie Incognito.
This move is a bit surprising considering Jackson was just reportedly informed of his release on Wednesday. Incognito has been very good for the Raiders when he’s on the field. He’s shown strong leadership and has been dominant in pass protection. The team rewarded him with a two-year contract last offseason, but he was hampered with injuries in 2020 and only played in two games.
However, even though the team is planning to release him, he could be back on the roster soon.
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Sounds Like Door Is Open for Potential Return
As Rapoport noted, Incognito is healthy and plans to play in 2021. He even noted that it’s possbile the offensive lineman could stay in Las Vegas. The Atheltic’s Vic Tafur also chimed in and revealed that he’s expected to re-sign at a smaller price point.
If Incognito does come back at lower price, this is a smart move for the Raiders. Incognito is still an elite offensive lineman. Kolton Miller and him have that left side locked down when he’s healthy. He recently reportedly made it clear that he’d like to stay with the team. It’s always possible that another team will swoop in and offer him more money. That said, Incognito appears to like the city of Las Vegas and Jon Gruden is a big fan of his. The Raiders gave him a chance when he was at his lowest point. It’s hard to seem him playing for any other team at this point in his career.
More Moves Incoming
With the salary cap being lower than expected this year, the Raiders have been putting in work to open up some space. Now that Incognito’s, Jackson’s and Williams’ contract are off the books, the team should be under the cap. However, being slightly under the cap won’t give them much room to work.
The Raiders will need to make some more moves if they hope to be active in free agency. The team is reportedly shopping right tackle Trent Brown. He’s one of their priciest players and is often injured. It will be hard for Las Vegas to find a trade partner. If not, it’s possible they release him outright.
Cutting Brown isn’t a gurantee but there are a couple of guys who will almost assuredly be gone. Cornerback LaMarcus Joyner has a cap hit of over $11 million in 2021. He’s been one of the NFL’s worst cornerbacks and will almost certianly get cut in the near future. Marcus Mariota is another player who likely won’t be on the books next season. They’re currently trying to trade him. If they can’t find a partner, he’ll probably be released. With the Joyner and Mariota contracts torn up, the Raiders should have a good amount of money to play with.