Five Free Agents the Oakland Raiders Should NOT Target

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Feb 1, 2015; Glendale, AZ, USA; New England Patriots free safety Devin McCourty (32) celebrates after the game against the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium. The Patriots defeated the Seahawks 28-24. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

3. Devin McCourty

Devin McCourty is Pro Football Talk’s #7 player on their “Free Agent Hot 100” list, but many observers believe that he won’t make it that far, and is a prime candidate for the Franchise tag for the defending champs. Still, with a Bill Belichick team, you never know, and McCourty may indeed make it to the open market. If he does, it’s doubtful the Raiders will pursue him.

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  • McCourty is, first of all, a player who would be signed to start right away, which would make things awkward for the Raiders, who just re-signed future Hall of Famer Charles Woodson to be the starting free safety in 2015. Beyond that, McCourty, fresh off the Super Bowl victory, will be a high value target for many teams in free agency, as he is regarded as one of the best safeties in the league. McCourty, who earned $5M against the cap for the Pats last year, would likely command a salary commensurate with the five highest-paid at his position, which would put his cap number at least at $8M per year – meanwhile, the Raiders already have a starting safety who costs $3.5M against the cap.

    Further, McCourty is not necessarily a scheme fit for Jack Del Rio and Ken Norton Jr., nor is he a player either coach is familiar with. Meanwhile, former Broncos safety Rahim Moore is also likely headed toward free agency.

    Moore, a less heralded player who is younger than McCourty, played for Jack Del Rio in Denver for three seasons, and player and coach are both very familiar with each other. It’s much more likely that the Raiders target Moore – who would not have the same expectation to start over Woodson – as their free agent solution to the long-term future of the free safety position.

    Next: Name to Avoid #4: Greg Hardy