3 Free Agents Raiders Should Sign With New Cap Space

A look at three free agents that the Las Vegas Raiders should sign with their new cap space.
A look at three free agents that the Las Vegas Raiders should sign with their new cap space. / Ethan Miller/Getty Images

As the 2021 NFL season nears, the Las Vegas Raiders created some extra cap space on Friday. The team announced that $12 million of defensive end Yannick Ngakoue's $13 million salary would be converted into a signing bonus. As a result, Las Vegas has created an extra $8 million in cap space.

Even though the new season is just about a week away, there are still several intriguing names remaining in free agency that could give the Raiders a boost. After all, Las Vegas has qualified for the postseason just once since 2003, so the team could use all the help that it can get.

Here's a look at three free agents that the Raiders should sign with their new cap space.

Las Vegas Raiders Rumors

1. Danny Amendola, Wide Receiver

The Raiders granted veteran wide receiver John Brown his release earlier this week, leaving the team a bit thin at the position. Las Vegas is now banking on sophomore wideouts Henry Ruggs III and Bryan Edwards to take a major step forward in 2021. However, that's far from a guarantee — especially if either one of them runs into the dreaded "Sophomore Slump." That's why the Raiders should take a swing on former Buffalo Bills WR Danny Amendola. The 12-year pro has been a consistent passing option throughout his career and could give the Raiders a reliable veteran presence on the field. Even at 35 years old, Amendola still had 46 receptions for 602 yards in 14 games with the Detroit Lions last year. At worst, signing him can motivate Ruggs and Edwards into playing better.

2. David DeCastro, Guard

Earlier in the offseason, the Pittsburgh Steelers released six-time Pro-Bowler guard David DeCastro. He did need to undergo ankle surgery and hinted that he'd be fine with retiring, but nothing has happened yet. Consider how the Raiders' depth chart lacks a backup right guard behind Denzelle Good, they'd be wise to give DeCastro a call. Even with his ankle injury history, he's missed just six games over the last seven years. He didn't allow a single sack on 845 offensive snaps in 2020 and finished the campaign with a 64.1 Pro Football Focus overall grade — better than Good's 56.7. If DeCastro's ankle injuries are behind him and he wants to continue his football career, Las Vegas should make room for him.

3. Olivier Vernon, Defensive End

Veteran defensive end Olivier Vernon torn his Achilles in Week 17 of the 2020 NFL season and still remains a free agent to this day. Considering how the average recovery time for an Achilles tear in the NFL is around nine months, Vernon should be healthy enough to play soon. If he is, he could be a good fit for the Raiders. Clelin Ferrell is starting on the left side, but a healthy Vernon would likely be an upgrade over him. After all, the 30-year-old free agent is a former All-Pro and Pro-Bowl player. He also recorded 36 total tackles and 9.0 sacks in 14 games with the Cleveland Browns last year. Yes, Vernon has primarily started on the right side for the majority of his career, but playing opposite to Ngakoue would certainly give the Raiders defense a much-needed boost.

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Devon Platana is not a FanDuel employee. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.