Last Friday the Raiders extended cornerback David Amerson on a 4-year deal. They made this move well before they needed to and in doing so ensured they were stocked with talented young players, most of whom will be under contract with the team for several years.
Amerson was to be the absolute top priority to re-sign should he head into next offseason looking at free agency. Now the top priority is Malcolm Smith, due to the fact that in 2015 he signed on with a two year deal.
Here’s what the Raiders are looking at in terms of expected starters and years on their current contract:
David Amerson, Michael Crabtree, Karl Joseph, Marquette King, Kelechi Osemele
Amari Cooper, Rodney Hudson, Bruce Irvin, Sean Smith, Jihad Ward
Mario Edwards Jr, Ben Heeney, Austin Howard, Khalil Mack, Jamize Olawale, Clive Walford, Dan Williams
Derek Carr, TJ Carrie, Justin Ellis, Gabe Jackson, Sebastian Janikowski, Reggie Nelson, Donald Penn, Aldon Smith, Lee Smith
Denico Autry, Jon Condo, Latavius Murray, Marcel Reece, Malcolm Smith, Menelik Watson
What we see here are 32 players who figure to be either full or part time starters or are their primary position holder. Of those 32 players, 26 have multiple years left on their current contract, and 17 are under contract for at least three more years.
Also of these players, only five are over the age of 30 – Janikowski, Nelson, Penn, Condo, and Reece – all of whom are among the 15 players with two or fewer years left with the team.
That’s what a team looks like that is set up for several years in the future.