Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

March 3, 2010
Raiders doling out second-round tenders; 8 of 14 restricted free agents spoken for

By all reports, and accompanying appearances, the Raiders like what they have and want to bring back what they deem as important pieces in their rebuilding project.

Why else, then, would they assign so many high-priced tags - five second-round tenders - to players that could conceivably be retained for so much less?

Quarterback Bruce Gradkowski, Pro Bowl long snapper Jon Condo, safety Hiram Eugene and linebackers Ricky Brown and Thomas Howard were the recipients of the second-round tenders. Fair enough, because it means the Raiders have the first right of refusal to match any offers made to the players or receive second-round draft picks as compensation should they leave.

But the tender that had many scratching their collective heads was the first- and third-round tender bestowed upon cornerback Stanford Routt, who has started a mere 22 of the 75 games he's played in while picking up two sacks and four interceptions since being a second-round draft pick out of Houston in 2005.

On one hand, it seems as though the Raiders have overinflated the worth of several of their players. On the other, if that's who they want to keep...

They put seemingly more reasonable "original draft pick" tenders on middle linebacker Kirk Morrison (who was selected in the third round) and offensive lineman Chris Morris (a seventh rounder).

That means the Raiders still have six restricted free agents with which they have to decide whether or not to tender offers to by Thursday's 1 p.m. deadline. Otherwise, quarterbacks Charlie Frye and J.P. Losman, running back Gary Russell, suspended fullback Luke Lawton, offensive lineman Khalif Barnes and linebacker Jon Alston become unrestricted free agents.

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Looking for a primer on what an uncapped year means for the NFL in 2010? Check out PFT's 20 Questions.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/03/03/20-questions-about-the-uncapped-year/

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About Raiders Blog and Q&A

Matt Kawahara was born in Sacramento and attended McClatchy High School and UC Berkeley, where he wrote for the independent student paper The Daily Californian. He graduated from Cal in 2010 and started at The Sacramento Bee as a summer intern. He joined The Bee's sports staff in fall 2011.

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