The Raiders need a lot of help on both sides of the ball and there are many ways to go about upgrading positions. The next date is March 11 when free agency opens but with teams needing to analyze their salary cap situation compared to the talent on their roster, there will be some sacrifices being made. And with the Raiders in an enviable salary cap situation, they are in a position to catch some of those players as other teams release them.
Here are those players on defense for whom the Raiders should be watching:
Jason Jones DE Lions ($2 mil savings) - Injured most of last season. Looks to be odd man out on the Lions defensive line. Could move back to defensive tackle where he had his best season.
Chris Clemons DE Seahawks ($7.5 mil savings) - Spent one season with the Raiders in 2007. Has spent last four seasons in Seattle. Had double digit sacks first three but was relegated to situational pass rusher last season. Seahawks are ready to move on.
Brodrick Bunkley DT Saints ($1.3 mil savings) - His $6.1 million cap figure makes his release a true cap casualty. He is a solid DT overall.
Jasper Brinkley ILB Cardinals ($2 mil savings) - Serviceable inside linebacker who could offer good competition and depth at the position.
Greg Toler CB Colts ($4.2 mil savings) - Got a big free agent contract after showing flashes in 2012. Had some injuries issues and never lived up to it. Could be short lived contract.
Carlos Rogers CB 49ers ($5.1 mil savings) - He's 32 which is getting up there but he is still a solid starter. He just makes too much money and the 49ers seem ready to move on from him.
Thomas DeCoud S Falcons ($3 mil savings) - Serviceable player with a high cap hit. Would be decent option as insurance behind Charles Woodson and perhaps eventual replacement.
(Salary cap savings figures provided by Overthecap.com)