Rodney Hudson

Cardinals Extend Rodney Hudson

The Cardinals furnished Rodney Hudson with a new deal after he was shipped from the Raiders to the Cardinals, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. Originally believed to be a restructure, the center actually inked a brand new three-year, $30MMM contract. 

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Originally, Hudson was set to count for $9.9MM in 2021. Now, he has two additional years worth $20.1MM with $16MM in total guarantees. For the Cardinals, that means a much more palatable $2.86MM cap charge for 2021. Meanwhile, the trade left the Raiders with a $7MM+ dead money charge.

Hudson, a three-time Pro Bowler, joins D.J. Humphries and Justin Pugh on the Cardinals offensive line. Last year, he graded out as the eighth-best center in the NFL per Pro Football Focus. Hudson came with a contract to match his resume, but the cost of a third-round pick was well worth it for the Cardinals. He’s now set to take over for Mason Cole, who finished just 31st on PFF’s list.

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Cardinals C Rodney Hudson Restructures Contract

The Cardinals have done some work today to open extra cap space. Veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer writes that center Rodney Hudson has restructured his contract.

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Arizona traded for Hudson and his hefty $9.9MM cap charge earlier this month, and it always seemed inevitable that the veteran would work with the organization to reduce that number. Balzer notes that $8.8MM of the lineman’s compensation was converted into a signing bonus, thus reducing Hudson’s salary to $1.1MM. The team also added three voidable years to the contract, meaning the new signing bonus can be prorated over five years. As a result, Hudson’s 2021 cap charge was reduced to $2.86MM.

Hudson also had his 2022 workout bonus converted into base salary, increasing that latter number to $10.85MM. As a result, the lineman’s new cap charge is $12.61MM.

Earlier this month, the Cardinals sent a third-round pick to the Raiders for Hudson and a seventh-rounder. He will now join the likes of D.J. Humphries and Justin Pugh on a talented offensive line in Arizona. Pro Football Focus graded Hudson as its No. 8 overall center last season, and the veteran has three Pro Bowl appearances on his resume.

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Raiders Trade C Rodney Hudson To Cardinals

The Raiders found a taker for Rodney Hudson. A day after the Pro Bowl center surfaced as a cap casualty, the Raiders sought to trade him. The Cardinals will acquire the veteran snapper.

Hudson will be shipped to Arizona in a pick-swap deal, per Mike Garafolo and Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). This will represent a significant upgrade at the center spot for the Cardinals while giving the Raiders something in return for a player they appeared prepared to cut. The Cards announced the move.

Instead of releasing Hudson, the Raiders are set to receive a Day 2 pick in a trade. The Cardinals will send a third-round pick for Hudson and a seventh-rounder, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets. The Cards were rumored to be targeting centers. They will now acquire one of the best in the business.

Initially a 2015 signee, Hudson broke out with the Raiders. The former Chiefs third-round pick has made the Pro Bowl three times and paved the way for three 1,000-yard rushing seasons while with the Raiders. He operated as the centerpiece of one of the NFL’s better offensive lines. He will now join the likes of D.J. Humphries and Justin Pugh in Arizona; the Cards also brought back right tackle Kelvin Beachum on Wednesday.

Pro Football Focus graded Hudson as its No. 8 overall center last season; Cardinals primary snapper Mason Cole came in at 31st. The 2021 season will be Hudson’s age-32 campaign.

The 10-year veteran will remain attached to the extension the Raiders signed him to in 2019; that deal runs through 2022. Las Vegas will be tagged with some dead money, upwards of $7MM, but a trade will be an obviously preferable scenario on the financial and compensation front for the Silver and Black. That said, the Raiders will have some big shoes to fill at this position.

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Raiders Looking To Trade Rodney Hudson

Yesterday, we heard the Raiders were cutting Pro Bowl center Rodney Hudson. Not so fast. Las Vegas is actually try to move Hudson via trade first, a source told Josina Anderson (Twitter link).

In a follow-up tweet, Anderson notes that there are talks of a trade involving a “second day pick.” A Day 2 pick would be a pretty nice haul for a player they were about to cut. This has been a trend in the NFL recently, for reports to leak that a player was getting cut only for the team to try to trade him at the last minute, sometimes successfully sometimes not. It was reported the Saints were going to cut defensive tackle Malcom Brown, and then they traded him to the Jags yesterday.

The Dolphins were set to cut Kyle Van Noy, then tried to trade him, only to ultimately release him after finding no takers. Whether Hudson is traded or released, it still represents a dramatic overhaul of the Raiders’ offensive line. This move follows Las Vegas’ cuts of Gabe Jackson and Richie Incognito and its trade of Trent Brown to New England.

Hudson, 31, graded as Pro Football Focus’ No. 8 overall center last season. The Raiders signed him to a three-year, $33.75MM extension in 2019. In six seasons with the team, he’s missed only four total games.

The Florida State product and former Kansas City Chief has made the Pro Bowl in three of the last five seasons and was a second-team All-Pro in 2019.

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Raiders To Release C Rodney Hudson

A near-full-on overhaul is taking place on the Raiders’ offensive line. They are releasing Pro Bowl center Rodney Hudson on Tuesday, according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter).

This move follows Las Vegas’ cuts of Gabe Jackson and Richie Incognito and its trade of Trent Brown to New England. A Hudson release, if not designated as a post-June 1 cut, would not save the Raiders any money. It would then make sense if Las Vegas designated its longtime center a post-June 1 release.

Of the slew of moves on the Raiders’ O-line, this one qualifies as the most surprising. A 2015 Oakland signee, Hudson has made three Pro Bowls as a Raider and has become one of the NFL’s top centers. They signed him to a three-year, $33.75MM extension in 2019. The former Chiefs third-round pick figures to generate immediate interest, having proven productive and durable. Hudson has missed just four games in six Raiders seasons.

Hudson, 31, graded as Pro Football Focus’ No. 8 overall center last season. He led the way in Josh Jacobs‘ back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons and has been with the franchise long enough to pave the way for Latavius Murray‘s 1,000-yard slate in 2015. He lasted less than two weeks as the Raiders’ longest-tenured offensive linemen, following Jackson out the door.

Of the Raiders’ Week 1 starting O-line from last season, only Kolton Miller remains with the team. This release also effectively makes Derek Carr the last man standing from Reggie McKenzie‘s GM tenure.

The Raiders tacking on two void years to Hudson’s extension would increase the dead-money hit to $15MM, were Hudson not designated a post-June 1 release. The latter scenario would save the Raiders $6.4MM against their 2021 cap. Thus far, the Raiders have not replaced any of their departed starters up front. Even the player who replaced Incognito for most of last season, Denzelle Good, is a free agent. This certainly becomes one of the NFL’s most interesting position groups.

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Raiders Remove 4 O-Linemen From Reserve/COVID-19 List

Oct 25: Saturday’s COVID-19 tests for Miller, Good, Hudson, and Jackson came back negative, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports (via Twitter). All four will be available for the Raiders’ battle with the Bucs this afternoon.

Oct. 24: As of Saturday afternoon, the NFL has avoided another major schedule issue. Sunday afternoon’s Raiders-Buccaneers game is a go, and the hosts could well be better equipped to pull an upset.

The Raiders removed offensive linemen Kolton Miller, Denzelle Good, Rodney Hudson and Gabe Jackson from their reserve/COVID-19 list Saturday. The team had placed its other four starting O-linemen on the list because they were deemed high-risk close contacts of Trent Brown, who tested positive for the coronavirus this week.

Brown will miss Sunday’s game, but his blocking mates are on track to play. However, they will not be officially cleared to do so until their Saturday coronavirus tests come back clean, Mike Garafolo of NFL.com tweets. The team will obtain that information Sunday. Its four non-Brown O-line starters receiving clearance will certainly help Las Vegas’ cause against a Tampa Bay defense ranked first in DVOA through six games.

Recently signed defensive lineman David Irving is also set to make his Raiders debut. Reinstated from an 18-plus-month suspension just last week, Irving signed with the Raiders as a practice squad player. The Raiders will see what the former Cowboys starter can do beginning Sunday. Irving, 27, has not played since the 2018 season, when he saw action in only two games, and has been suspended four times by the NFL. In 2017, however, the interior pass rusher notched seven sacks in just eight games (all starts).

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NFL Moves Raiders-Bucs Game; Raiders Under Investigation For COVID-19 Compliance

2:56pm: The players the Raiders sent home from the team’s facility Wednesday — Abram, Kolton Miller, Denzelle Good, Rodney Hudson and Gabe Jackson — will be placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. These players now qualify as high-risk contacts of Brown and will need to isolate for five days. Their last contact with Brown was Monday, however. That would allow these players — barring a positive test — to play Sunday, though it will sideline them from practice this week. Still, this development probably points to the NFL needing to postpone this game to Monday or Tuesday.

One good sign: no new positive tests emerged from Wednesday’s round of testing, Pelissero tweets. But the issues the Patriots and Titans experienced with the coronavirus illustrate the Raiders have not necessarily turned a corner here.

2:36pm: The NFL is preparing to move the Raiders-Buccaneers game off its Sunday slate, it appears. The league announced Thursday it will shift Bucs-Raiders from a primetime slot to 3:05pm CT Sunday. Seahawks-Cardinals will now be Sunday’s primetime game.

Positive COVID-19 tests for Trent Brown and Damon Arnette have put the Raiders’ Sunday status in jeopardy. Additionally, the NFL and NFLPA are investigating the Raiders for COVID-19 compliance, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets.

The league has video of Brown and other Raiders offensive linemen congregating without masks, Pelissero adds, and Brown is not believed to have consistently worn his tracking device. He is now on Las Vegas’ reserve/COVID-19 list, and none of the other Raiders told to isolate — the rest of their starting O-line and safety Johnathan Abram — have returned to practice.

This has obviously clouded Sunday’s game. The Raiders have already had their bye week, giving the NFL another major test in this COVID-19-altered season. Brown is asymptomatic, per Pelissero (video link).

The NFL has shifted a few games around this season, but it has thus far avoided postponing a team’s game after a bye week. Las Vegas’ bye came in Week 6. Were the Raiders to see their Week 7 contest postponed to a later date, the league would run into logistical issues getting that contest scheduled. The rumored Week 18 makeup window remains in play, though the league has been able to avoid serious discussions of implementing it. A Raiders postponement beyond Tuesday would push that issue back to the forefront.

Thursday’s schedule change is not the first time the Raiders have run into COVID-19-related trouble. Jon Gruden was issued a six-figure fine for mask violations in September, and Darren Waller‘s charity event last month featured Raiders seen without masks. For now, the league expects Bucs-Raiders to take place in a lower-profile time slot Sunday. But the schedule change makes it easier for another postponement to commence.

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Raiders Place Trent Brown On Reserve/COVID-19 List

Ahead of a nationally televised game against the Buccaneers, the Raiders are set to be without their Pro Bowl right tackle. They placed Trent Brown on their reserve/COVID-19 list, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets.

Per the NFL’s new coronavirus protocols, Brown must isolate for five days. That will shelve him for Sunday night’s game. Brown had just returned from an injury that caused him to miss almost all of Las Vegas’ first four games. He came back in Week 5 to help the team to a key upset in Kansas City.

Because of contract tracing, the Raiders will use a strange collection of offensive linemen in practice for the time being. They sent home the rest of their current entire first-string offensive line — Kolton Miller, Denzelle Good, Rodney Hudson and Gabe Jackson — after the Brown news. Jon Gruden hopes this quartet can return by Thursday, per Paul Gutierrez of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Having not been placed on the COVID list, the other Raiders first-string blockers would be able to do so. These players’ last contact with Brown came Monday, per the Washington Post’s Mark Maske (on Twitter). Even if they are deemed high-risk close contacts, they would be able to play Sunday — so long as they do not test positive.

The Raiders also sent starting safety Johnathan Abram home, Gutierrez tweets. They used Sam Young, Patrick Omameh, Andre James, rookie John Simpson and former second-round pick Brandon Parker as their first-string O-line in practice Wednesday. Brown, who signed a then-record tackle contract with the Raiders in March 2019, also missed five games last season but became the rare right tackle Pro Bowl selection.

The Brown news comes a day after the Raiders placed cornerback Damon Arnette on their reserve/COVID-19 list. Individuals do not need to test positive to land on this list, only to be in close contact with someone who has. The upcoming rounds of tests will be critical for the Raiders and the NFL.

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Raiders Restructure Rodney Hudson’s Deal

The Raiders have some extra room to work with in 2020, thanks to Rodney Hudson. On Wednesday, the center agreed to convert $11.6MM of his base salary into a completely guaranteed roster bonus to carve out $9.28MM in additional space, as Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets

As part of the revised deal, Hudson will add two void years to his deal. In essence, this changes very little for the multiple time Pro Bowler while allowing the Raiders to kick the can down the road a bit with regards to the salary cap. Hudson’s deal – the “real” part of it – runs through 2022.

After spending his first four seasons with the Chiefs, Hudson joined the Raiders on a five-year, $44.5MM free agent deal in 2015. Last summer, he inked a three-year, ~$34MM extension to reset the market at his position. Since joining the Raiders, Hudson has started in all 76 of his games en route to three Pro Bowl nods. Last year, he graded out as the league’s No. 13 ranked center but he’s placed much higher in the past.

True to the Las Vegas spirit, the Raiders have already spent plenty of cash this offseason by signing free agents like linebackers Cory Littleton, Nick Kwiatkoski, defensive tackle Maliek Collins, and edge rusher Carl Nassib. Now, they have even more coin for the later FA waves, both before and after the draft. And, as of this writing, they hold two first round picks and five of the first 91 overall picks.

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AFC West Notes: Mahomes, Lock, Harris, Raiders

Chiefs star quarterback Patrick Mahomes is questionable for Kansas City’s upcoming game against the Vikings, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. Mahomes, of course, was injured on Thursday Night Football of Week 7 against the Broncos during a quarterback sneak. In a freak incident, Mahomes dislocated his right kneecap.

He returned to practice just six days after the injury, but was quickly ruled out for last Sunday’s game against the Packers. While his status is still up in the air, Rapoport reiterates “At the least, he is considered to have a shot to play.” At 5-3, Kansas City has some breathing room in the AFC West divisional race. However, the chances of a high seed and a first-round bye would be greatly diminished the longer they have to stick with backup Matt Moore.

Here’s more from around the AFC West:

  • While quarterback Brandon Allen is currently next in line for the Broncos after Joe Flacco‘s injury landed him on injured reserve, the team plans to play rookie second-round pick Drew Lock in Denver’s final two games against the Lions and Raiders, according Mike Klis of 9News. Flacco was diagnosed with a disk injury in his neck that requires at least six weeks to recover. Given the Broncos 2-6 record, the team decided to shut down the veteran for the season. Allen is in his fourth NFL season, but has yet to appear in a regular season game.
  • After weeks of trade rumors, Broncos cornerback Chris Harris could be staying in the mile-high city beyond this season, according to Nicki Jhabvala of The Athletic. With three young daughters and a fourth coming soon, Harris told Jhabvala he was “Definitely relieved and happy to be able to finish the year here.” The news comes as somewhat of a surprise given Harris’ tumultuous relationship with the organization over the past few seasons. However, according to Jhabvala, the team’s new coaching staff has meshed well with the upcoming free-agent.
  • Both Raiders centers Rodney Hudson and Andre James are listed as questionable for Sunday’s matchup against the Lions. They both are dealing with ankle injuries and managed to practice, but according to head coach Jon Gruden, both were “sore.”