Are The Raiders A Front Runner To Acquire Calvin Johnson In 2016?

Calvin Johnson could have (should have) been a Raider nine years ago. Instead they notoriously drafted JaMarcus Russell. According to Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports, the stars may be aligning for Johnson and the Raiders once again.

With the Lions soon to be in all-out rebuild mode, many have speculated that Megatron, who will be 31 years-old carrying a $24 million cap number in 2016, will be one of the first to go.

According to Robinson, no one in the league is in a better position to grab Johnson than the Raiders. Finally competitive enough to attract premium free agents, the Raiders are projected to have more cap space than anyone in the league – Robinson estimates around $75 million in available spending on a $155 million cap.

Johnson, now in his ninth NFL season, is on pace for another big season – 96 receptions, 1,318 yards. He has four years remaining (after this season) on his current deal, but could be cut after the 2017 season with very little cap damage. The final year of his deal carries no dead money if released.

Johnson has been dominant in games against the Raiders.
Johnson has been dominant in games against the Raiders.

Raiders’ GM Reggie McKenzie is regarded as a frugal spender, but would he consider taking on Megatron’s deal? Your guess is as good as mine, but it wouldn’t be the first time he’s thrown big money around. The Raiders were in the mix (financially at least) for Ndamukong Suh and McKenzie also offered hefty deals to among others, Jared Allen, DeMarco Murray, Randall Cobb, and Rodger Saffold (retracted after his physical). With the 2016 free agent list somewhat uninspiring, it would make sense for the Raiders to make a splash on Johnson.

If nothing else, Megatron’s chances of ending up in Oakland appear to be as good as his chances anywhere else.

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