The Las Vegas Raiders cut ties with another high draft pick on Monday, by releasing second-year cornerback Damon Arnette because of off-field issues.
Here are some quick thoughts on the situation and what it may mean.
The 2020 draft was a disaster:
The Raiders had five draft picks in the first three rounds in 2020. It was supposed to be a type of draft that positively impacted the franchise for years. In the end, it had the reverse effect.
Last week, the Raiders released No. 12 overall 2020 pick Henry Ruggs III after the wide receiver was arrested for DUI resulting in death in a crash in the early morning Tuesday.
Third-round pick, running back/receiver Lynn Bowden was traded to the Miami Dolphins before playing a game with the Raiders; and third-round pick linebacker Tanner Muse was cut this year without playing a game for the Raiders.
The only players remaining from the 2020 draft 18 months ago are receiver Bryan Edwards, guard John Simpson and cornerback Amik Robertson. Only Edwards and Simpson are currently playing.
This might hurt Mayock’s future:
Last month, Raiders’ owner Mark Davis wouldn’t commit to Mayock for the future. As a fallout of the Jon Gruden departure last month, Davis may completely clean house after this season.
The developments surrounding Ruggs and Arnette could cost Mayock. Gruden isn’t around to pay for it and Mayock was — at the very least — part of the process of drafting them. Both Mayock and Gruden repeatedly publicly congratulated themselves on drafting high character players and now two first-round players are done 18 months after joining the organization because of incidents that occurred in Las Vegas.
Give Mayock credit for owning the Arnette mistake.
Mayock said he knew there were concerns about Arnette before the draft. Said Raiders knew Ohio State staff well and both sides were convinced Raiders were a great fit and that their staff and front office could make it work.— Vic Tafur (@VicTafur) November 8, 2021
Mayock is "sick to my stomach. We did more research on Arnette than anybody else since I have been here and we missed. And that is 100 percent on me."— Vic Tafur (@VicTafur) November 8, 2021
Yet, it could end up costing him his job.
Khalil Mack trade:
Another reason why this release stings is that Arnette was drafted with a pick acquired in the Khalil Mack trade with the Chicago Bears. The Mack trade was supposed to be a huge part of Gruden’s rebuild. The Arnette pick ended up being a waste of a major resource.
This affects the cornerback position more in theory than reality. The truth is, the Raiders knew for a while that Arnette wasn’t helping. He couldn’t keep the starting job and only started seven games as a Raider. Don’t be surprised if the Raiders, once again, look at cornerbacks early in next year’s draft.
Damon Arnette didn’t bust — the Raiders busted.— Austin Gayle (@PFF_AustinGayle) November 8, 2021
Arnette was the consensus 63rd overall player, a low percentile athlete and had character concerns (and was an older prospect).
There’s too much data/information now to make that bad of a selection in Round 1.