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Raiders agree to terms with CB/KR Darius Phillips

Las Vegas is on the free agency board

NFL: Jacksonville Jaguars at Cincinnati Bengals
Darius Phillips (23)
Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

Perhaps this will open the flood gates.

After sitting out the first day of the legal tampering period of free agency, the Las Vegas Raiders got an early start on Tuesday morning and joined the signing party. And we have a answer to our trivia question. Who was the first player the Josh McDaniels-Dave Ziegler partnership agreed to terms with in traditional free agency? Cornerback/returner Darius Phillips.

It is certainly not a splash signing and vibes with the notion that the Raiders may be bargain hunting. Phillips, a Western Michigan product who is 26, was a backup cornerback with the Cincinnati Bengals. He has started 10 career games at cornerback with none in 2021. He did start eight games in 2020. Phillips had four interceptions in eight games in 2019 and he has five career picks. He played just 99 defensive snaps in 2021 and finished the season on injured reserve.

Phillips has returned a total of 30 punts in his NFL career, while retuning 25 kickoffs. He was a star returner in college.

So, Phillips appears to be a role player. The Raiders still have plenty of salary-cap room to hunt for more impact players. And there plenty of quality players still available.

Among the players the Raiders could potentially target on Tuesday are cornerbacks Stephon Gilmore and Darious Williams, and receivers Allen Robinson and Marquez Valdes-Scantling. Las Vegas reportedly has been involved with all of them and talks were reportedly heating up with Gilmore (who would be the team’s best cornerback) Monday night.

So, with Phillips secured, let’s see what the rest of the day has in store in Las Vegas.