Aug 23, 2013; Green Bay, WI, USA; Green Bay Packers tight end Jermichael Finley (88) during the game against the Seattle Seahawks at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland Raiders Can Afford the Jermichael Finley Risk

Jermichael Finley is still searching for a new home in 2014.  Here are some reasons why the risks are not as prevalent to the Oakland Raiders.

Reggie McKenzie can get him cheap due to injury risk

First there is the issue of price.  Jermichael Finley is still well under the age of 30 and has a history of being very productive.  However at the same time there is of course his injury situation, particularly regarding a recent neck issue that has a lot of teams being very wary about signing him.  Nobody wants to overpay for a guy who might be one hit away from a wheelchair.  Finley meanwhile says he’s been cleared by doctors and is ready to resume his career once a team grants him a shot.  From the perspective of GM Reggie McKenzie, this is a player he should know.  As director of player personnel in Green Bay, he was there when the Packers drafted Finley and saw his development first hand.  He knows what Finley can do when healthy.  Given the neck situation, it’s bound to drive down the price to a point where the Oakland Raiders can afford it.  They currently have over $9 million in salary cap space.  They could probably get Finley on a one-year flier deal somewhere between $2-$3 million without it having a serious effect.

Matt Schaub could use somebody besides Mychal Rivera

Besides that there is the simpler issue of offensive production.  At present the Oakland Raiders don’t really have a proven threat at tight end for quarterback Matt Schaub.  At present the most productive player they have at the position is second-year man Mychal Rivera who posted 38 catches for 407 yards and four touchdowns in 2013  Hopes are that with a new quarterback in town those numbers will go up but is that worth risking the tight ends not pulling their weight?  There really is no harm in bringing in a Jermichael Finley.  If he turns out a bust it’s a one-year risk that didn’t pass out and if he plays like he can then the Raiders suddenly have two credible threats down the middle of the field to compliment their retooled receiving corps.  The NFL after all is about finding matchups.

Tags: Jermichael Finley Matt Schaub Mychal Rivera Oakland Raiders Reggie McKenzie

  • Masai

    Have you forgotten David Ausberry as a TE? I think he has a better upside than Rivera or Kasa.

    • Erik Lambert

      His production doesn’t reflect that upside.

    • Silvia Arredondo

      He’s good but also injury prone.

  • Chris Schroeder

    Agreed! I would like to make this point in regards to the neck fusion surgery. When the Broncos had signed Peyton Manning coming off a similar surgery I thought they were out of their mind being that he was one hit away from a “wheelchair”. As a raider fan I obviously hate using him as my one example, but the facts are the facts. He’s won the division twice and last year appeared in the Super Bowl so now people don’t even remember that neck fusion surgery that he had just a couple years ago. I do know that statistically the odds are against him with this particular type of surgery but we all know too well that players have come back to have great success. Even if the Raiders do not sign him I do wish him great success in his future endeavors and that he stays healthy and makes a comeback with whatever team he does play for.

  • Raider Grant

    Isn’t it save to say Finely is injury prone? The Raiders CAN’T afford to acquire injury prone players, as we don’t need any more gambles that could blow up in our faces. In my opinion, McKenzie hasn’t found the TE he’s looking for, or is satisfied with what we have for this season. We gambled/provided second chance on a couple undrafted free agents this year, McKenzie could have picked up GREAT TE in Colt Lylera if he was really looking to upgrade the position. Colt has since signed with Packers, but was available for some time before being picked up. Thus, I don’t believe McKenzie is looking to pick up Finley. Go Raiders

  • John Thomas Hurdle II

    I know it not a lot to ask. But Finley had 3 bones fused. I would like for him to sit out half a year. This is not like Payton he goes across the middle and lowers his shoulder so his neck is prone for injury. I fear more for him.

  • Anthony Hughes

    what if it works in the raiders favor or, God forbid the worst happens either way i dont wanna see him in a wheelchair. we need to give our qb the best weapons possible. and like it or not finley has a better skill set period. then again trades and free agency is far from over. cant wait to see how things play out this year