The Raiders are doing a lot of free agency flirting these days. Due to Oakland’s salary cap conundrum there just isn’t a lot of cash available to Al Davis. As much as Al would like to make it rain he’s just going to have to get creative with his dollars. Thus the necessity to explore gambles like Jared Gaither. While Gaither’s health concerns ultimately proved Drew Rosenhaus correct in the whole “Raiders sign Gaither” debacle that hasn’t stopped Oakland from looking into other potential rolls of the dice.
Reports are swirling today claiming that former Seahawk Lofa Tatupu is making a stop in Oakland.
Tatupu was once regarded as one of the NFL’s up and coming young defenders until injuries slowed his rapid progress. The former USC Trojan was asked to take a pay cut and refused instead asking to be released. Pete Carroll obliged and thus we find Lofa lurking on Oakland’s radar.
There are a few questions raised by the Raiders potential interest in Tatupu. First and foremost is the position he plays. Tatupu has been a fixture at middle linebacker for some time now. There’s no chance the Raiders have already given up on the ever-improving Rolando McClain. That kind of talk is blasphemous at best. Therefore the next logical step is to move Tatupu to the outside specifically weak side.
Here is where we run into a problem.
Tatupu’s injuries are the biggest reason Seattle was willing to part ways with him. How exactly is he going to fare in a position where he’s required to do more in pass coverage and pass rush?
Whatever the case this is just another attempt by Oakland to find value on the market. If Tatupu checks out health wise then all of the other questions will have to be addressed by the coaches. It seems doubtful Tatupu would sign on for a reduced role if he was unwilling to take a reduced pay rate. His visit could just be a formality as Davis loves his Trojans but make no mistake. If Al likes what he sees and the price is right Raider Nation will welcome Tatupu with open arms.