As of last Friday, the Raiders had been chipping away at their approximately $70 million in salary cap room. Then they started making moves. With free agency not yet here, they first went about re-signing their own.
They re-signed several players which ate into the cap. There was a one-year extension for Denzelle Good ($1.675 million cap hit in 2019 according to Overthecap.com), round two tenders on Daryl Worley and Jalen Richard ($3.1 million each), a new 2-year deal for Erik Harris ($2.025 million), and a new 2-year deal for Johnathan Hankins ($2.5 million). Subtract the $495K salaries that got bumped out of the top 51 and you have about $10 million spent.
With some $60 million to spend, they traded for Antonio Brown who represents a $15.125 million cap his in 2019.
The next morning we learned they had traded Kelechi Osemele to the Jets for a fifth round pick, taking his $10.2 million cap hit off the books. Between that and Brown’s arrival, it subtracted another $4.8 million from the available cap money, to give them about $55.2 million.
Monday morning they got right at it in free agency, agreeing to terms with tackle Trent Brown on a 3-year deal. He carries a $15.25 million cap hit this year. Minus the obligatory $495K lowest man dropoff, and you put the Raiders at about $42 million in cap room.
With two new players on offense now brought into the fold, the next signing was that of defensive back LaMarcus Joyner on a 4-year, $42 million deal. His cap hit in 2019 sits at $9 million, bringing the Raiders available money down to $33 million. Right at 10th in the league.
The next official move could possibly be the release of Donald Penn. He would offer a savings of $5.475, raising the Raiders available money under the cap to right about $38 million, which would currently land them at 8th most.
They will need to set aside about $8 million to sign their rookie class (you can see how I came to that figure before they traded the 66th pick to the Steelers), giving them approximately $30 million to spend.
With a new wide receiver, offensive tackle, and safety/slot corner in house and a starting guard now gone, they still have plenty of needs to address. Most notably on the defensive side of the ball. While everyone was drooling over the possibility of Le’Veon Bell, there’s the small matter of fixing their historically bad defense and the pass rush in particular. And his asking price ($13 million) would have nearly cut the Raiders available cap money in half.
That $30 million figure is enough to land them probably one more somewhat high profile free agent, a second tier guy, maybe re-sign a couple of their own and then look to bring in a handful of quality depth/competition players.