In need of a veteran receiver with game experience, the Raiders signed 6’3” 195-lbs. WR Ashlie Lelie to a one-year deal. He was recently released by the San Francisco 49ers. He brings a 17.2 yards-per-catch average to the silver and black. He is a deep-threat receiver and former 2002 first-round draft pick for the Denver Broncos.
A couple of other factors come into play here.
2) SLB Robert Thomas, who lost the positional battle to new starter Ricky Brown, is injured. He is receiving starters pay and the last two high-salaried, non-starters that were in the same position (Greg Biekert and Danny Clark) were released.
My solution would be to release SLB Sam Williams and SS Hiram Eugene. Robert Thomas has earned a roster spot and has been far more productive than Sam Williams. He was behind Robert Thomas and Ricky Brown all of training camp.
He is a good guy, and I would thank him for his contribution, and wish him well, but his services are no longer needed.
He has been with the team since the 2003 draft and has missed 44 of 80 games since he was the selected as the 83rd player selected. He was selected over LB Angelo Crowell and LB Bradie James. He has yet to develop in to the player the team envisioned.
Speaking of the draft, this is a year in which none of the Raiders' draft choices didn’t make the team. The Raiders gave up a second-round pick to acquire CB DeAngelo Hall, essentially making him a part of the 2008 draft.
WR Arman Shields was placed on the injured-reserve list, due to being injured the majority of training camp, but he looks to be the surprises of the 2009 training camp.
There are linebackers on the waiver wire that can give the Raiders what Sam Williams has provided at a lower cost.
Speaking of the waiver wire, the team can find an athletic offensive tackle that can take Mario Henderson’s spot, which would allow the team to place him on the practice squad and provide them with time to develop both Henderson and the replacement player.
The reason for Hiram Eugene’s release can be justified by stating there isn’t a need to carry five safeties.