After weeks of speculation, the Las Vegas Raiders were finally able to move off of Trent Brown. The good news is: they didn’t have to release him outright. According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Raiders are trading Brown and a seventh-round pick to the New England Patriots for a fifth-round pick. Both picks are for the 2022 NFL Draft.
Brown played one season with the Patriots before joining the Raiders and won a Super Bowl. He was always a big fan of Bill Belichick and will now be able to reunite. Brown also restructured his contract to a one-year deal worth $11 million.
Normally, a player of Brown’s caliber would be worth a lot more than a late-round pick swap. However, his value was greatly reduced by the fact that he only played in 16 games in two years with the Raiders. The Athletic’s Vic Tafur also reported that Brown’s weight ballooned up to 400 pounds last season. As good as the Pro Bowl right tackle can be when he’s healthy, he’s simply not worth the headache at the price the Raiders were paying him.
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Brown Is Happy to Be Gone
Brown is always saying cryptic things on social media, but lately, it’s appeared like he was aiming for a release or trade. He clearly wasn’t happy with the Raiders anymore and wanted out. He was very quick to react to the news.
There’s no doubt that Brown is going to irk the entire Raiders fan base. The team gave him a record-breaking contract in 2019 and he never fully rewarded the team. Fortunately, the team was able to get something in return with the trade, but it will still go down as a very bad free agency move. With Brown cut, the Raiders could now have around $28 million to spend in free agency.
2019 Was a Nightmare Free Agency for Raiders
Trading Brown puts a nice, big bow on the Raiders’ 2019 offseason disaster. During that offseason, the team traded for Antonio Brown, signed Tyrell Williams to a $44 million contract, signed LaMarcus Joyner to a $42 million contract and signed Brown to a $66 million contract.
Brown never played a game with the team while Williams and Joyner both got cut this offseason after a disappointing two years. Those four players were all supposed to be major difference-makers for the Raiders. The fact that 2020’s free agency class also looks like a botch job, the team clearly has issues.
Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock seriously need to reevaluate how they’re approaching free agency. If the team didn’t waste so much money over the last two seasons, they likely would already be back in the playoffs. It’s time for the Raiders to be a lot smarter with their money. They can’t keep giving massive contracts to players who aren’t known as consistent stars. Williams was a No. 2 wide receiver with the Chargers and got big money. Joyner was an average safety with the Rams but the Raiders somehow thought he’d be an excellent nickel corner. Brown had one good season with the Patriots but was hampered with injuries while he was with the 49ers. If the Raiders are going to spend money, they have to be using it on the right players.