With legendary owner Al Davis out of the picture the Oakland Raiders take the first step in changing the character and decide to release cornerback Stanford Routt.
Last August Routt had restructured his contract to five years and $54.5 million, an exorbitant number even for the team's top cover corner. His totals for his career better than average for a corner with 237 tackles and 10 interceptions however, in many eyes he is simply not that type of player. Last year he was spotty and what was more prevalent were his penalties during critical games.
Despite an appauling penalty count Routt is one of the better corners in the NFL today. Now the Raiders will likely pay him $5 million to play somewhere else. in this case the team will end up around $1.25 million by having him move on, remember this Al guy and this is a new era of Raiders football.
His current contract with the Raiders is said to contain $20 million in guarantees over the first two years, so Oakland is essentially paying him not to play in 2012 after his struggles down the stretch last season.
It's a move Davis may have never made but its now time to rebuild the secondary this offseason. Raider Nation is now split on this issue making the case on whether or not this was the right decision by the Raiders exective staff or not.
There are two view points on this move, one is the Routt makes the plays and is good when the Raiders need a strong corner to cover the top receivers in the league. However, some fans disagree and say he cost the team the playoffs by the excessive amount of penalties call against him through the season.
In either case the Raiders are beginning a new era of Raiders football, hopefully the team will not cleanhouse but become stronger to improve and build in finding the right players willing to work well with the new excutives and coaching staff.