The Oakland Raiders just added one of the best offensive weapons in the game by trading for Antonio Brown. Less than 24 hours after trading for Brown, the Raiders traded away one of their own offensive weapons: Kelechi Osemele.
Oakland is trading Osemele to the New York Jets, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter on Sunday. Schefter didn’t report what the Jets will send to Oakland for Osemele’s services. And of course, the trade cannot be processed until Wednesday, which is when the new league year and free agency begins at 4 p.m. ET.
This is a rather shocking move on Oakland’s part, especially since it signed the two-time Pro Bowler to a five-year, $60 million contract in 2016. Osemele would have accounted for $10.2 against the Raiders’ salary cap, according to Overthecap.com. But he was stellar in a Raiders uniform, racking up two consecutive Pro Bowl nods in 2016 and 2017 and a first-team All-Pro nod in 2016.
Last year, however, the Raiders surrendered 52 sacks — tied for fifth-highest in the league. And Osemele posted a 53.7 PFF grade, which is a below-average score by Pro Football Focus’ metrics.
Nevertheless, the Jets are getting a 29-year-old guard who can carve out space in the running game and help keep a clean pocket for his quarterback. He only had one bad year. Sophomore quarterback Sam Darnold was sacked 30 times in 13 starts last season, so adding Osemele to that offensive line would give Darnold some much-needed protection.
But this question remains for Oakland: Who is going to replace Osemele?
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