Raiders middle linebacker Nick Roach suffered a concussion, probably more than one, in a preseason game at Green Bay. That was Aug. 22, 2014. Fast-forward more than six months and Roach still isn’t right.
Roach hasn’t been cleared to resume football activities and, in recent weeks, it became clear that he wasn’t going to play again soon. There is also significant concern that Roach’s issues are career threating.
With those things in mind, the Raiders made a move. They released Roach with a failed physical designation on Friday afternoon.
The Raiders also released veteran safety Usama Young with the same designation. Young is rehabbing from a knee surgery required after he tore his ACL and MCL during a Week 7 loss to the Arizona Cardinals. The recovery timetable for those injuries can reach a full year.
Roach’s release comes with $2.1 million in cap savings and $1.6 million in dead money. He was signed through the 2016 season.
There is no dead money associated with Young’s departure. The Raiders will save $1.1 million with that transaction.
Adding that savings to NFLPA numbers, the Raiders now have $66.47 million in salary cap space. The Raiders are expected to release backup Matt Schaub ($5.5 million cap number) at some point but, with the team’s cap space and without a roster bonus creating a deadline, there is no specific timetable to do so.
The Raiders now have a pressing need at middle linebacker. They don’t plan to start the season with Miles Burris at the helm, as he was last season. Young provided veteran cover at both safety spots. The Raiders could look for that in free agency.