Now that free agency has started to wind down, the Oakland Raiders and their general manager Reggie McKenzie deserve credit for the job they've done.
As a whole, the entire free-agency process is a grueling one.
Jack Bechta of the National Football Post wrote an amazing, in-depth piece detailing what really goes on from the time the season ends until free agency officially opens its doors.
You may not agree with McKenzie's philosophy of bringing in veteran players, but the one thing he made sure of is that the Raiders are going to go out and compete next season.
McKenzie is in a tough place right now.
Coming off back-to-back 4-12 seasons, his job, along with head coach Dennis Allen's, could be in serious jeopardy if the team doesn't show signs of improvement.
Considering we are witnessing the rebirth of the AFC West—a division that manufactured three playoff teams last season—McKenzie had to do something in free agency to try and keep up.
If nothing else, McKenzie's foray into open market brought a sense of fiscal responsibility back to this organization.
Joel Corry of CBSSports.com discussed McKenzie's decision to use a "pay as you go" approach:
McKenzie is using a "pay as you go" structure with his signings. A player's cash and salary cap numbers are the same in each contract year because he is receiving salary guarantees instead of a signing bonus under the "pay as you go" model. The guarantees typically consist of 2014 base salary or roster bonuses in these deals. Since there isn't any signing bonus proration, the Raiders won't have any dead money if a player is released after the season.
For all of the positive acquisitions we saw this offseason, there were still a handful of moves the Raiders will regret not making.
Here is a detailed look at five of them.