The moment the free agency negotiation period open on Monday morning the Raiders called Trent Brown’s agent. Ten minutes later, he called Brown to say he had an offer he couldn’t refuse that would make Brown the highest paid offensive lineman in NFL history. Naturally, he took the deal and thus the first deal of free agency was announced.
Along with those reports, came word that Brown would be playing left tackle while previously labeled “left tackle of the future” Kolton Miller would be moving to right tackle.
Not long after that, those reports were being viewed as perhaps less of a fact than perhaps an assumption based on the fact that Smith’s sizable paycheck — one that typically left tackles get — and it being the left tackle spot for the Patriots that earned him that check. But the Raiders are saying not so fast. They aren’t admitting to any such decision and are refusing to even address it at this time.
In Antonio Brown’s introductory press conference, Mike Mayock was asked about on which side his new 6-8 tackle would be playing and he said merely “we’re not even going to address that today.”
Soon thereafter Trent Brown held his introductory press conference, and he stuck to the cliche “whatever is going to help the team.” He wouldn’t even say which side he prefers.
It’s hard to say exactly how much keeping this decision quiet helps the team strategically. After all, whichever side Brown plays on, Miller will simply play on the other side, so it’s not like there is clearly an open tackle spot to fill.
Maybe they just want to fend off any more specific questions about either player acclimating to switching to the other side.
Or why they would give up on their 2018 top pick as the left tackle after one season.
Or why they would pay record money to a right tackle.
All questions that will be asked eventually regardless.
And yes, I realize the best pass rushers line up on the right side, but that’s mostly because they line up against the side that raises their chances of getting to the quarterback, so they’re going against the lesser of the two typically.
We’ll just have to type more words to add the possibility of either player lining up in either spot until probably OTA’s in May to know for certain.