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Another aspect of the Seymour trade

Posted by Albert Breer  March 25, 2010 03:55 PM

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First of all, the Raiders now hold the ninth pick -- Still an expensive slot, but not an outrageous one. Last year, Packers DL B.J. Raji went in that spot, and got a five-year, $28.5 million deal, with $18 million guaranteed. The year before, Bengals linebacker Keith Rivers got a six-year, $23 million contract with $15.6 million guaranteed.

Good money, yes. Not eye-popping, though, and if you draft as intended that high, these deals wind up being positive ones for the teams, more than those in the top five.

Now, here's the other potential issue: What if the Raiders aren't that bad in 2010? Oakland was 5-11 last year, played most of its losses competitively, and beat the Bengals, Steelers and Broncos in the last seven weeks of the year.

They play in a division with teams in transition, and get the NFC West in 2010. And where they've got a huge problem at quarterback -- literally, in JaMarcus Russell -- it's out there now that they're sniffing around Donovan McNabb. I'm not saying that they'll be any kind of contender, and they could still go 4-12, but there's also a chance that they improve enough to land in the middle of the league, which puts that 2011 pick in the middle of the first round.

That's where the Seymour deal wouldn't be what it could've been for the Patriots. Not only will they have given up a year with the player they'd get with that pick, but they'll also have taken a lower pick in a weaker draft.

Again, there's a long way to go with all this stuff. But there's little question that the Seymour trade was quite a gamble, even moreso than most believed it was at the time.
News, analysis and commentary from Boston.com's staff writers and contributors, including Zuri Berry and Erik Frenz.

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