Oakland Raiders sign DE Justin Tuck

The price here is right for Justin Tuck, 11 million over 2 seasons. Tuck was a dominant defensive lineman from 2008-2010, grading out 4th, 6th, and 9th among 4-3 defensive ends, but he was only an average starter in 2011 and 2012. However, he had a great contract year in 2013, grading out 7th as Pro Football Focus ranked 4-3 defensive end. He’s going into his age 31 season so he’s probably on the decline, but I still believe he can be an average or above average starter over the next couple seasons and this deal is only for a couple of seasons.

That being said, I think it’s kind of weird the way the Raiders are approaching the off-season. I loved the cheap one year signing of Tarell Brown, but other than that, their approach has been weird. They let LaMarr Houston and Jared Veldheer, young, talented players in their prime of their career, leave on reasonable deals when they had so much cap room and then they used that cap room to sign over 30 veterans who won’t be around anymore at any point in time when the Raiders could even hope to be good.

They also didn’t re-sign Vance Walker and have made no effort to bring back Pat Sims, two underrated players who were part of the reason why the Raiders were even passable defensively last year. 5.5 million yearly to Justin Tuck isn’t a bad deal and neither is 6 million yearly to LaMarr Woodley (which I’ll get into next), but wouldn’t it make more sense to give Houston 7 million yearly (or 8 million yearly if that’s what it would have taken for him to stay in Oakland for their rebuild)?

Grade: B




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