When it comes to tight ends, the Raiders have had some pretty great ones, two of which coming in as free agent signings. The first of two on this ranking is Jared Cook.
He joined the Raiders prior to the 2017 season after spending time with three teams in his eight previous seasons. One thing is for certain, the Tennessee Titans, the then-St. Louis Rams and the Green Bay Packers all were unable to truly unlock Cook like the Raiders did.
Whether that was due to necessity or usage or any number of variables, it is a fact. In only two seasons as a Raider, Cook emerged as one of the best pass-catching tight ends in the NFL. That is pretty odd for a player who had already spent eight years in the league. One would think his skill set would have been utilized at some point during that time.
Nonetheless, in 2017 Cook signed a two-year, $10.6 million contract with $5 million guaranteed. Cook easily earned that contract and made a strong case to be re-signed by the team. How that turns out remains to be seen in this upcoming offseason.
In the 2017 season, Cook posted 688 yards and two touchdowns, a solid total for a tight end. In 2018 however, he really came into his own, leading the Raiders in receiving yards with 896, tacking on six touchdowns for good measure.
A shrewd piece of business and a roll of the dice turned into a huge success. That is why Cook finds himself in the top-15 free agent signings in Raiders history.