Raiders DT Richard Seymour has contract voided, will become a Free Agent at seasons end
The Raiders had a hard time getting under the salary cap heading into the 2012 season. One big reason they were able to do so was the restructuring of defensive tackle Richard Seymour’s deal.
When the deal was done in March, it was announced as a five-year extension worth $37.5 Million that saved the team roughly $7 million for the season in cap hits. What wasn’t announced however, was the fine print.
Vic Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that the defensive tackle’s final four years and $30 million were voided after he missed five games with a grade two hamstring injury.
Seymour commented on the voiding of the contract as he returned to Raiders practice Monday.
“I would love to retire a Raider but I have earned the right to be a free agent,” Seymour said. “I really love wearing this uniform, we’ll see what happens.”
Seymour has appeared in 53 games for the silver and black since the late Al Davis sent a first-round pick to New England for him in 2009. He’s registered 18.5 sacks and 139 tackles with the team.
The move is surprising, but one that could save the team a lot of stress next year as they are projected to sit above the current salary cap. With Seymour likely out of the question, the Raiders have big decisions to make on QB Carson Palmer and LB Rolando McClain who combined are due $19.6 Million in total cap hits.
Seymour has been a vested veteran for the Raiders, and a leader that they have needed, but his production is not where the team needs it to be for the price they are paying. With the lack of depth on the defensive line, the new regime may look to go younger and cheaper, while building through the draft.
Raiders General Manager declined an interview on the subject, according to Tafur.
McKenzie has made drastic changes since his arrival. The roster has been shaken up and 26 players that were on the teams week 17 roster last season have been let go. Seymour says that’s part of the deal, but they’ll keep on trucking.
“It’s a business,” Seymour said. “Everybody is being evaluated from the top to the bottom. We’re all in this together, and we have to put our best foot forward. This is a great week to get back on track.”
He is listed as questionable for Sunday vs. Kansas City, but it looks like these will be his last days as a Raider.