After the Rolando McClain dismissal at practice on Wednesday and the ensuing media frenzy it seemed all but certain that today Rolando McClain would be cut. So far though no decision has been made on what the future is to hold for Rolando.
“Really nothing more than we asked him not to come to practice today. There’s going to be consequences for his actions. It’s a team related-issue, and I don’t really want to get into the details of it. But we asked him not to come to practice today." says coach Allen during his media session on Thursday.
After Rolando's ill-advised and self destructive Facebook tirade yesterday, which since has been removed, the Raiders had other options become available besides just an outright cut from the roster.
I know many of us fans would much rather just cut ties with McClain right away. After his notorious tirade yesterday where he claimed to want to play for a "real team" though he now can face a team suspension instead. A suspension for the rest of the year from conduct detrimental to the team does have several benefits.
One is that the rest of his salary for this year would go unpaid and therefore be more of a punishment than a cut would be to McClain. A suspension also would be more of a punishment because McClain would have no chance to play for anybody the rest of the year. That would certainly make him regret his now infamous comments.
The last benefit of a suspension that I will mention is that it allows the Raiders to hold onto him until they are able to make trades again. Even a 7th round pick would be better than nothing, although getting anything for him is probably unlikely.
An outright cut from the roster has benefits in its own rights too. The main benefit with cutting him right now is that there are teams with serious injury problems that could be more enticed to claim McClain now rather than in the off-season. The Raiders have enough dead money with the off-season cuts of Routt and Wimbley, it'd be nice to not add more onto that tab by McClain going unclaimed. Whether cut now or in the off-season there is no guarantee he will be claimed either way though.
With this situation comes weighing the options and the Raiders will take their time to make their decision.
"This is something that we have to make a decision as an organization, and we’re going to make sure we make the right decision.” says Allen.
Whichever way they go as long as McClain never plays another down as a Raider I will be happy. Bill Romanowski definitely agrees with me on that.
When Dennis Allen was asked if not making an immediate decision on Ro sends the wrong signal DA's response was "No, I’m not sure what signal anybody is looking for. We’re going to make a decision and that’s what we’re going to do.”
While some are arguing that this event is a sign of Dennis Allen losing the locker room the opposite very well could be true. The way Allen is handling this mess can actually increase the respect for Allen in the locker room.
Just like with Aaron Curry's release, how DA is handling Ro tells this team that he will rule with discipline and that no matter your draft possesion nobody should be complacent. If any players want to keep their jobs then they should take heed to the example being made of McClain who was the 8th overall pick in the 2010 draft.
That rant by McClain didn't just throw the coaches under the bus, it threw Ro's teammates under the bus as well. There is no doubt that some of his teammates would have and should have been offended. They now want to see action from Allen about this and he is going to get more respect from them by not giving Ro a pass.
If Ro is not playing this week Omar Gaither will start at MLB instead. He has one year of experience at that possession. This is what DA had to say of Gaither:
“He’s a veteran player and he understands football. He’s started a lot of games in his career. He’s a guy that’s played. He’s picked up on the defense quickly. So we have confidence that he’ll be able to go, if that’s needed."
DA already is getting more respect from me for pulling the plug on the disappointment that is Rolando McClain. That of course is only the case as long as Rolando will never again taint the Raiders colors by wearing them upon his chest though.