First, Jeremy Maclin was a cap casualty for the Kansas City Chiefs. Then, Eric Decker was cut by the Jets after they could not find a trade partner. Maclin signed with the Ravens after a stay in free agency and Decker is just hitting the open market. Thus, some have connected former Jets Decker and Maclin to the Oakland Raiders.
Listen, I get it. You can never have too many receivers in today’s modern NFL which is a pass first league. Further, the Raiders still have $32 million in cap space, per Over the Cap. They may decide to roll the dice on another veteran offensive playmaker. This could also keep another contender from rolling the dice on the receivers.
Both Decker and Maclin could have provided the Raiders with an added veteran presence at receiver. Decker could provide an opportunity to spell Michael Crabtree on the outside. Meanwhile, Maclin is the agile receiver that Oakland could have utilized in the slot.
Maclin registered 536 yards on 44 catches and two touchdowns last year. Decker only appeared in three games last season. Decker registered 9 receptions for 194 receiving yards.
Nonetheless, both players registered 1,000 yards receiving in 2015. Decker surpassed 1,200 receiving yards in 2013. Maclin made a Pro Bowl in 2014 with more than 1,300 receiving yards. Many wonder if Decker or another veteran receiver can return to great performers on a high-profile offense like Oakland.
However, the Raiders seem already stacked at receiver. Cordarrelle Patterson is one of Oakland’s biggest x-factors on offense. Patterson’s speed and playmaking works on the outside or in the slot.
Last season’s incumbent third-receiver Seth Roberts also returns. He proved clutch last season like that overtime Tampa Bay game winning score.
Then, there are KJ Brent, Johnny Holton and Jaydon Mickens have flashed athletic profiles and glimpses in practice. They might develop into something more than a practice squad or special teams player.
Ultimately, the Raiders appear stacked at receiver. They do not need to pay another veteran receiver. They also have Crabtree to serve as the mentor and leader of the group. The Raiders must say no to another veteran receiver. Maclin is off the market but the Raiders better decline interest in Decker too.
Oakland is better served giving reps to one of the developmental prospects on the roster. Obviously, Maclin is not an option since signing with Baltimore. Therefore, the Raiders would probably pass on Decker too since Maclin has the better track record.
Regardless, would Decker even have enough playing time to make an impact? Even if Decker could beat out Patterson or Roberts for a spot on the roster, would he want to exist as a rotational player?
At the end of the day, the Jets and Chiefs cut Decker and Maclin for a reason. They were not meeting the salaries they signed and their former teams wanted to let them go. Oakland should just say no to add another veteran receiver too.