The new Las Vegas Raiders’ brass is quietly preparing for next week’s free agency. It managed to create a good chunk of salary-cap room this week by restructuring the contracts of standout left tackle Kolton Miller and key reserve running back Kenyan Drake, according to ESPN.
The Raiders have restructured the contracts of LT Kolton Miller and RB Kenyan Drake, creating $14.525M in 2022 cap space, per source.— Field Yates (@FieldYates) March 10, 2022
According to different reports, the Raiders now have anywhere between $32 to $36 million in salary-cap room, which is enough to do some decent work in free agency and extend a current player such as defensive end Maxx Crosby. Teams can start talking to free agents on Monday, and expect agreements to occur before free agency officially opens Wednesday.
#Raiders Restructures— Spotrac (@spotrac) March 10, 2022
Kenyan Drake’s $5.5M roster bonus was converted into a signing bonus, with 4 void years added.
Kolton Miller’s $13.5M roster bonus was converted into a signing bonus.
Total Savings: $14.525M
Projected Top 51 Space: $36Mhttps://t.co/TbWiiUKNlM
Both Miller and Drake signed their now redone deals in 2021. Teams don’t love to do restructures because it often causes issues down the road, but it is an easy way to create cap room. Las Vegas could do other restructures and cut some players. Among the candidates to be cut by the Raiders include linebackers Cory Littleton and Nick Kwiatkoski and defensive end Carl Nassib. However, their releases wouldn’t create cap relief until June 2 when free agency is all but over and those decisions would create dead money in 2023,
It is interesting the Raiders decided to redo Drake’s deal instead of cutting him and looking elsewhere for a Josh Jacobs’ backup. Drake, who likely fits in well in new coach Josh McDaniels’ scheme, had 254 yards rushing and 30 catches last year before getting hurt in December.
i really play for the raiders. really living out a childhood dream— Kenyan Drake™ (@KDx32) March 8, 2022
With these new deals, perhaps the Raiders will be bigger spenders than some agents thought earlier this week.
Anything can happen, but there's a feel in the agent community #Raiders may be bargain hunters on the market.— Bill Williamson (@BWilliamsonNFL) March 8, 2022