Oakland Raiders Trimming Roster, Thoughts On Recent Cuts


The last few days have seen the exit of a handful of players.  James Jones, Miles Burris, and Kevin Boothe were all released recently. Nick Kasa was released on Tuesday to add to the exodus of players that the Oakland Raiders felt were now expendable after the 2015 NFL Draft.

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When a team has an offseason as productive as the Raiders have had; it can only be expected that a few players were going to be released in order make room. Of these three players, I can’t say I’m surprised by any of them being released. One could argue that Jones was the most productive receiver on the team last season, but with the return of Rod Streater, acquiring Michael Crabtree through Free Agency, and drafting Amari Cooper in the first round, (Adding two more receivers after that) it was only a matter of time before receivers started getting let go.

Starting with the oldest is a pretty common strategy in this sense, even if he was the most productive player at his position last season. Jones played well, and showed that he can still be a productive player, I’m sure he’ll get picked up by another team.

I really rooted for Miles Burris, he played so hard, and with so much fire. He was put in a tough spot though, being forced to fill in for injured Nick Roach at MLB last season. The problem, he wasn’t ready to be a starting NFL linebacker, and on top of that he was playing out of position, Burris is naturally an OLB. This resulted in Burris being the lowest rated ILB in the NFL. Out of 125 players who lined up at that position, Burris was 125th…and it wasn’t even close. Burris’ grade was -42.2, the next lowest rated player was -22.  It is no surprise that Burris got cut.

Between Free Agency and the Draft, Reggie added a number of linebackers, Curtis Lofton will most likely be the new signal caller for the front seven of the defense as an experienced true MLB, while Malcolm Smith brings great depth and competition to the outside. Drafting Ben Heeney in the 5th round, just made Burris all the more expendable. I think Burris has a lot of potential, if he gets picked up and is given a chance to play in his natural position in a system that fits, I think he should do just fine.

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Just one season removed from being a 16 game starter, Kevin Boothe could only find a spot as a back up last year with the Raiders. Just like Jones, the Raiders needed to make room on the roster for the new young talent. Many people are expecting 4th round pick, Jon Feliciano, to be able to step in an contribute right away, and picking Anthony Morris later on can add some more depth and a guy to develop in house.

It is no secret that Reggie likes to build teams through the Draft. He believes Free Agents are essentially stop gaps at a position until a player can be drafted and developed in house, so it is no surprise to me these players are being let go. The Raiders roster is filling up each year with more and more players that Reggie has drafted, so we may start to see fewer and fewer of these one and two year free agent signing.

Next: 2015 NFL Draft: Oakland Raiders Grades