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Raiders release Tyvon Branch

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Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Coming into the offseason, the Raiders had a decision to make with regard to Tyvon Branch. He was coming off two-straight seasons in which he was placed on injured reserve and was to be a $9.7 million salary cap hit this coming season. And Thursday, that decision has been made -- Tyvon Branch has been cut.

Not long after the Jason La Canfora first reported the news, Branch said his goodbyes

Cutting Branch doesn't actually save the Raiders much on this year's cap. He leaves behind $6.7 million in dead money for a total cap savings this year of about $3 million.

After becoming the Raiders' fourth round pick in the 2008 draft, Branch spent 7 seasons in Oakland. He took over as the full time starter in his second season and never looked back. Prior to the past couple seasons, he was a mainstay on the defense, missing just two starts over the four previous seasons. He led the team in tackles nearly every one of those seasons.