Raiders should continue to shop Burgess

By Anthony Carroll  |   Monday, June 01, 2009  |  Comments( 10 )

Oakland Raiders
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It seems Derrick Burgess has had enough with the Oakland Raiders. Trade talks during April's NFL draft and a very timely stomach flu causing the 30-year-old to miss voluntary camps point strongly toward the defensive end’s days with Oakland coming to an end.

Yet head coach Tom Cable isn’t so sure.

A week ago, the 44-year-old coach, when asked about a possible Burgess trade scenario, commented, “I don’t know that would happen in any way.”

Here’s some advice: Make it happen.

When initial rumors began circling, the talks were that Burgess could possibly be swapped for as much as a second- or third-round draft pick. The Boston Herald was one of the first sources to report the news, with the New England Patriots being the likely second party in the deal: “According to multiple reports, the Patriots are considering a trade that would land Raiders linebacker Derrick Burgess in exchange for a second- or third-round draft pick.”

(As a side note, “linebacker” is used in the report because Burgess would likely be used in New England as a 3-4 LB. Right now, with Oakland, he’s being put to use exclusively at defensive end.)

Though trade talks have seemingly cooled down in the dull, post-draft phase of the offseason, Raiders owner Al Davis should do all he can to reignite the flame. And there’s no shortage of reasons why.

Most obviously: He’s not the player he used to be. Since his first year in Oakland in 2005, Burgess’ games-played totals, number of tackles and number of sacks have all steadily decreased. To compare, in 2005 he started 16 games, registered 57 tackles and 16 sacks; last season, he started 10 games, made 24 tackles and had just 3½ sacks.

Since joining the silver and black, he’s made his way onto the injury report with back, calf, Achilles, shoulder and, most recently, tricep problems. On top of that, prior to his stint with Oakland, he missed almost two full seasons with foot problems and a torn Achilles tendon. In summary, Burgess is no stranger to the injury report.

Yet, despite a long history of injury problems and three straight seasons of across-the-board declining numbers, Burgess has repeatedly asked for more money. This season, he’s in a contract year and is set to make $3.5 million; yet his recent absence from the team’s voluntary camps demonstrate which side of the money issue he’s on. He wants more of it for more years, just as he did last offseason.

The only way Burgess should be paid is if another owner is dishing out the contract. The Raiders got about all they could out of the veteran defender, and his me-first attitude isn’t exactly the veteran mentality needed in a very young Raiders locker room.

Albeit, it’d be an entirely different story if Burgess was a run-stopping machine. But he’s far from it. The 260-pounder’s claim to fame is his ability to take down the quarterback, not stop the run, but even that ability has worsened with time.

If he remains on the Raider roster in 2009, he’d play for 16 games (if he can get lucky and dodge injury for an entire year), be used primarily on obvious passing downs, get paid his $3.5 million, take time away from younger ends like Trevor Scott and then leave Oakland. In that scenario, the Raiders would receive nothing for him.

So, while it can, Oakland should find an interested party and take what it can get for No. 56. There’s no need to delay the inevitable.
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About Anthony Carroll

Anthony Carroll began writing for on Sept. 26, 2005, making him one of the longest tenured contributors to the “365” team. As a senior writer, Anthony has taken on the task of delivering original content to the silver and black faithful year round, despite having to deal...
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CommentsComments: 10  |  Sign Up  View all comments
03:20 AM
This man has being crying for way too long. Burgess is one of the main reasons why the Raiders have sucked for so long. He has 2...
La Milicia Negra
06:27 AM
SVduran says: "As far as getting rid of a Fargus is wrong. It's a long season and one of them is going to have a hangnail for at...
neil b
11:37 AM
Burgess has had enough of the Raiders ? Fine by me,on your way son,thanks for your time.Can't get motivated for 3.5m ? Try...
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