Raiders have little cap space breathing room


Raiders have little cap space breathing room

Reggie McKenzie has taken a methodical, almost Moneyball-esque approach to free agency in his first run as the Raiders' new general manager.After sitting out the initial wave, by both design and budget, McKenzie began addressing team needs with the signings of cornerbacks Ronald Bartell and Shawntae Spencer and offensive lineman Mike Brisiel and re-signing the right side of the Raiders' offensive line, Cooper Carlise and Khalif Barnes.Now? Expect more of the wait-and-see approach by McKenzie, though former 49ers outside linebacker Manny Lawson has been linked to the Raiders to replace Kamerion Wimbley.According to documents obtained by, the Raiders currently have less than 3.72 million in salary cap room for 2012.Consider: Oakland currently has contracts worth a total team cap of 119,939,061. But the carryover of 3,077,427 from 2011 added to the NFL's 2012 salary cap of 120,600,000 (plus an "adjustment" of 18,400), is what has the Raiders 3,719,966 under the cap at the moment.And that's before factoring in a contract with former Green Bay cornerback Pat Lee, with whom McKenzie is still negotiating. Or signing any other free agents. Or contemplating any draft picks.Of course, there are ways to get more room, though it's the equivalency of credit card spending.Negotiating a long-term deal with strong safety Tyvon Branch, who was slapped with the one-year, 6.212-million franchise tag, would offer relief. As would restructuring the likes of defensive tackle Tommy Kelly (he has a cap number of 8.874.266 million), running back Darren McFadden (9.458.833 million) or receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey (8.159 million).

Raiders' Sean Smith charged with assault

Raiders' Sean Smith charged with assault

Raiders cornerback Sean Smith has been charged with assault, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced on Thursday.

The charge is for assault of his sister's boyfriend in Smith's hometown of Pasadena. Smith allegedly beat and stomped the boyfriend's head on the morning of July 4, 2017 in Old Town Pasadena, the district attorney said.

Smith faces formal felony counts of assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury and battery with serious bodily injury to the victim.

The 30-year old plans to fight the charges levied against him. 

"Sean maintains his innocence at this time," Smith's attorney, Daniel Rosenberg told NBC Sports Califorinia on Thursday evening. "We are going to be entering a plea of not guilty and fighting these charges."

A warrant was filed on Aug. 16. Smith's arriagnment is scheduled for Sept. 29. 

Smith was not present at Thursday's Raiders practice, the last session of training camp. He surrendered to Los Angeles County authorities, posted an $80,000 bond and has been released from custody.

If convicted as charged, Smith could face a maximum sentence of seven years in California prison. 

A Raiders spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The case is still under investigation by the Pasadena Police Department. 

This is another blow in a rough summer for Smith. He has struggled on the practice field during training camp and faces an off-field legal issue. Smith is guaranteed $9.5 million for the 2017 season. 

More to come...

After speaking with Marshawn Lynch, two things are crystal clear

After speaking with Marshawn Lynch, two things are crystal clear

NAPA – Marshawn Lynch spoke with the media Thursday for the second time as a Raider. He was quick-witted, disarming and, as always, not suitable for work.

It was five minutes of peak Marshawn, where he brought light to his charitable endeavors, called himself the “daddy” of his position group and cleverly sidestepped all things nation anthem.

He was asked four questions on other topics before elephant in the room was mentioned. It didn’t stick around long.

“I think the elephant left the room because a little mouse ran in here,” Lynch deadpanned. “Didn’t they say elephants are scared of mice or something? That [expletive] left the room, cousin.”

[RATTO: Lynch reminds media how much control he exerts over any interaction]

Two more related questions came down the pike. The first was about Del Rio letting players be themselves. He answered a different question instead.

“Yeah, because on ‘doctor-24,’ it’s a designed way that you’re supposed to run it but I have all freedom to go any way that I choose to run it,” Lynch said. “I would say, yes.”

The final anthem-esque query was deflected in a similar fashion.

“When we run ‘74’ or something like that, where I have to scan and read on both sides, that is pretty difficult. For the most part, I’m a veteran so I can make it work.”

Two things were crystal clear after speaking with Lynch.

He didn’t miss football one bit during his year in retirement. Lynch said this spring he decided to return after the Raiders were approved to relocate away from his native Oakland. He wants to represent his hometown well and give them something to cheer before the team leaves for Las Vegas.

That’s why he’s fired up even for Saturday’s exhibition against the Rams – he’s expected to make a cameo in that game – his first in Oakland wearing silver and black.

“It’s truly a blessing and just to have the opportunity to go and do that is a good [expletive] feeling,” Lynch said. “It’s a good [expletive] feeling.”

Lynch has always been active in the community, and hopes him playing here will bring more visibility to what’s being done to help kids in Oakland.

“I plan on continuing to do what I do in the community,” Lynch said. “It’ll probably be that now that I’m here, more people that are in the community might actually come out and support what it is that we’ve got going on.”