There is a current trend in the NFL to give quarterbacks as much money as they demand with little thought about the near future of the franchise. Well, teams that have done this are starting to see the negative side-effects of doing so. Dedicating between 10 and 20 percent of a team’s entire salary cap to one player is a recipe for disaster, especially when other big name players reach the end of their respective contracts.
Players in the NFL know what they are worth, and if the team that they are currently with is unable to pay them their asking price, then they will likely find another suitor that will. For many free agents in 2015, the Oakland Raiders appear to be that team.
Raiders Have the Deepest Pockets
For the marquee free agents of 2015, the Raiders are the most attractive team that will likely pay their asking price. Oakland has nearly $52 million in cap room heading into the 2015 NFL season, joining the Jacksonville Jaguars ($62 million) and the Cleveland Browns ($51.7 million) as the three teams in the league with the deepest pockets. Luckily for the Raiders, the Jags and Browns are the only two teams that could make them look like a promising landing spot.
Several players have already made it clear that if their current team is unable to give them more money they will seriously consider joining the Raiders. This list of players includes Carolina Panthers defensive lineman Greg Hardy, Denver Broncos tight end Julius Thomas, and even Dallas Cowboys running back (and the 2014 NFL rushing leader) DeMarco Murray.
Free Agent Shopping Spree Looming
The Raiders aren’t exactly a good (or promising) football team. Along with the Jags and Browns, they’ve been the laughingstock of the league for several years running. If one or two marque players decide to award the highest bidder and join the Raiders, it will likely have minimal impact on their post-season dreams.
However, if a handful of Pro Bowlers decide to take their talents to Oakland, and the ball starts rolling, the Raiders could find themselves back in the playoff race for the first time since losing Super Bowl XXXVII to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. With almost $52 million at their disposal, a free-agent shopping spree is likely and a re-birth not entirely out of the question.