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Kolton Miller’s contract actually hurts 2021 Raiders’ salary cap

Las Vegas currently has less than $3 million in cap room

Las Vegas Raiders v Cleveland Browns
Kolton Miller
Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

The contract breakdown of the recent extension the Las Vegas Raiders signed left tackle Kolton Miller to last week are in and they’re interesting, to say the least.

The way the contract is structured, Miller’s cap number increased by about $9 million this season. As a result, the Raiders currently have less than $3 million in salary cap room. Their draft class is going to account for more than $5 million in cap space and the team will need $1 to $2 million for in-season emergencies.

Therefore, the Raiders will have to create more cap space by either restructuring more deals or cutting some players. Among the release candidates are: safety Jeff Heath, running back Jalen Richard and defensive end Arden Key — but none of those players would create a ton of room.

This means the Raiders will be stretched to add more free agents of note, while having to account for the draft class as well.

Often when teams extend contracts, it doesn’t hurt the current year’s salary-cap, but the Raiders chose to approach it this way. The flip side is that in future years, Miller’s cap hit won’t be bad at all for a left tackle and it could create more flexibility for the cap overall. But that’s down the road, the 2021 season is what currently matters the most.

Was this a massive oversight? Oh, probably not. But it was a curious decision considering there is still more work to do on this roster.