The Las Vegas Raiders decided to stir the pot when they released 2020 third-round pick Tanner Muse on Monday. The linebacker never even had a chance to play a game with the team before they cut him loose. Many online took the opportunity to bash Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock for wasting yet another early-round draft pick.
However, the Raiders could’ve saved face if they brought Muse back to the practice squad. That won’t end up being the case. Muse has decided to join the Seattle Seahawks practice squad, per Tom Pelissero of NFL Network.
With the linebacker heading to Seattle, that puts a little bow on the situation for the Raiders. While it’s not the end of the world that Muse didn’t work out, it’s a very bad look for the team. They’ve wasted several third-round picks over the year. Muse joins Lynn Bowden as a fellow Raiders third-round pick from 2020 that won’t end up playing a single game for the silver and black.
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Raiders Made Offer to Muse
Things never appeared to work out for Muse while he was in Las Vegas. He played safety in college and had trouble transitioning to linebacker. A toe injury led to him missing the entirety of his rookie year, which may have saved him from getting cut last year.
The Raiders clearly didn’t believe that he’d figure the position out but were willing to let him develop further on the practice squad. According to Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the team did make Muse an offer to join the practice squad.
Obviously, Muse decided it was the better move to go to Seattle. Some fans may see it as spiteful towards the Raiders for cutting him on his birthday. That could be the case but it’s more likely that he sees more opportunity with the Seahawks. The Raiders will actually have a pretty deep linebacker corps when Nicholas Morrow and Javin White return from injury. There’s almost no way Muse would’ve seen significant playing time this season. Seattle is much thinner at linebacker which could open up the door for the former Clemson standout.
Was Cutting Muse a Bad Call?
From a PR standpoint, cutting Muse was a really bad decision. Confidence in the Raiders’ ability to draft is already very low. By wasting another third-round pick, the team’s biggest critics had a field day. Of course, detractors of the Raiders are going to have a lot to say whenever they make a controversial decision but that doesn’t mean it was the wrong move.
Muse was easily the worst of the team’s linebackers. With the additions of Denzel Perryman and K.J. Wright, the Raiders simply didn’t have room for a player who is developing very slowly. Cutting him now was the right call but that doesn’t exonerate the team. They should’ve never drafted him in the first place. He was considered a bad pick when he was first drafted and now it looks even worse in hindsight. The Raiders need to stop reaching for players in the draft. It would be one thing if there was a method to their madness but that hasn’t been the case. The team needs to stop wasting premium draft capital.