After much talk of Rodney Hudson being granted his release from the Raiders it turns out the Raiders got some calls on their star center and were able to pick up a 3rd round pick from the Cardinals for Hudson. The Raiders will take on $12.114 million in dead money with the trade but save some face by not having to release Hudson outright and actually get a pretty good pick in return.
Some people are surprised that Arizona would give up this much for Hudson given his contract status. The fact is if you really want a player there are no guarantees that you can land that player in free agency. It also requires you to negotiate a new contract and with Corey Linsley just signing for over $12 million a season it might not be cheap. By trading away the 3rd round pick the Cardinals get Hudson on the books for just $9.9 million this year and $10.85 million next year. That saves them probably a few million over free agency. Now if Arizona gets talked into redoing the deal and paying him more money then this is too high a price to pay but for access to a reasonable contract I think it is fair value.
Arizona is in a weird spot with their roster which has continued to skew older and older. They remind me a little of the Colts when Andrew Luck was a rookie and they surrounded their younger QB with guys on the wrong side of their careers. That is not to say Hudson is washed up, because he clearly is not, but just to point out the type of team they seem to be working on these last few years in hopes of competing before Murray takes on a huge amount of the teams salary cap. They are basically all in on this roster this year but have failed to really address any long term issues. They need a great draft this year to change that before the team falls apart when Murray gets the big contract in a year or two.
Jason is the founder of OTC and has been studying NFL contracts and the salary cap for over 15 years. Jason has co-authored two books about the NFL, Crunching Numbers and the Drafting Stage, which are widely circulated in the industry and hosts the OTC Podcast. Jason’s work has been featured in various publications including the Sporting News, Sports Illustrated, NFL Network and more. OTC is widely considered the leading authority on contract matters in the NFL.