Re-Sign Unrestricted and Restricted Free Agents
Next up on McKenzie’s to-do list is to bring back the team’s own free agents. Not all of them, of course.
The Raiders have 13 unrestricted, 1 restricted and 4 exclusive rights restricted free agents.
The unrestricted free agents are as follows:
- Latavius Murray
- Menelik Watson
- Andre Holmes
- Mychal Rivera
- Matt McGloin
- Stacy McGee
- Perry Riley
- Malcolm Smith
- D.J. Hayden
- Nate Allen
- Brynden Trawick
- Daren Bates
- Jon Condo
Murray is the most notable and the most debated amongst Raider Nation.
At the right price, personally, I’d love to have Latavius back. He’s not an outstanding back by any means, but he’s better than many give him credit for.
But the running back free agent market is going to be flat out awful, and it’d be shocking if a bad team didn’t offer Murray money in the range of what Doug Martin and Lamar Miller received — somewhere around $7M for four or five years. If so, it’s quite doubtful McKenzie brings him back. Nor should he, if that’s what happens.
Menelik Watson’s days in Silver and Black figure to be numbered. He’s flashed that second-round potential when healthy, but unfortunately, “when healthy” has been said far too many times throughout his four seasons in Oakland.
Maybe one day Menelik can stay healthy and finally start to live up to his draft slot, but if he does, it likely won’t be as a Raider.
Andre Holmes offers little value as a receiver these days, although he did put together a couple of nice games this year. But his biggest contribution is on special teams, and he’s actually damn good at it. Expect Holmes to be back.
Rivera has been a serviceable, if not respectable, tight end for the Raiders. But with Clive Walford penciled in as the primary pass catcher, Lee Smith set in stone as the primary blocking tight end, and McKenzie’s known affinity for Gabe Holmes, there isn’t much room left for Rivera. Expect him to sign elsewhere.
Matt McGloin? Peace.
Stacy McGee and Perry Riley both should be back. They’ve proven to be quality assets, and while they both might only be quality starters in the interim, at the minimum they’ll provide valuable depth for the defense.
Malcolm Smith is a player that Raider Nation has mixed feelings about, although the majority of those feelings seem to be negative. The biggest weakness of the former Super Bowl MVP is that he is a complete liability in coverage, while not being good enough in run support to make up for it. The Raiders should let him walk.
D.J. Hayden made a valiant effort for a few games and looked better than he ever has, but that really isn’t saying much. Peace.
Nate Allen filled in admirably for Karl Joseph at the end of the season, and that probably will be what sticks with the front office. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him back on a one-year deal, but this one could go either way.
Daren Bates is also a stud on special teams and should be brought back, but if the team decides to only keep one of their special teams aces, it’ll be Trawick.
Jon Condo will be back. The last thing we need is a repeat of the Travis Goethel game. #LongSnappersMatter
Let’s move on to the one and only restricted free agent:
Autry is a solid rotational piece on the defensive line, and barring a large offer from another team, he’ll surely be back. And if you have any gripes about Autry, please report them to @blackhanside.
Oakland has four exclusive rights free agents, which basically means that if the Raiders want to bring any of these players back, they aren’t going anywhere.
Those players are Seth Roberts, Denver Kirkland, Gabe Holmes and SaQwan Edwards.
The Raiders could try to throw Seth Roberts a bone, but he’ll probably drop it. Peace. (But unfortunately, I actually think they bring him back)
Denver Kirkland will be brought back, no doubt about that. He impressed as rookie and will provide needed depth for the time being, with the potential to develop into something more.
McKenzie must love Gabe Holmes as much as he once loved Tony Bergstrom. He’s kept the tight end around through two seasons so far, so McKenzie will probably want to see this one through, and find out what Holmes is capable of.
SaQwan Edwards? Peace. Although it wouldn’t be a surprise if he was brought back on the 90-man roster.