ALAMEDA -- The Raiders are stockpiling draft picks, with five first-rounders over the next two seasons, thanks to the Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper trades, plus their own selections.
Coach Jon Gruden told ESPN the Raiders aren’t trading anyone else before next week's deadline, but there’s always a price for doing business. The Raiders are planning for a better future, armed with commodities to aid that goal.
Even with Mack in Chicago and Cooper in Dallas, the Raiders still have roster value that could be attractive to other teams.
Given how freely the Raiders have parted with vital members of a young foundation, it leaves some fans wondering if Derek Carr is available as well. After all, Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie did say no player is untouchable.
Carr might be at this stage. It seems highly unlikely he'll be moved during the season, anyway, unless it’s an overwhelming offer that the Raiders simply can’t refuse.
Gruden has publicly supported Carr throughout his first year working with him, but this should be considered a prove-it season for the Fresno State product. He has all the physical tools to be a quality NFL quarterback. He also has a relatively tolerable contract, with guarantees already paid out. That could make him a tradable option this offseason or beyond.
The Raiders also could get out of Carr’s deal for $7.5 million in dead money next year -- a total that drops by $2.5 million in each of the two years after that.
The Raiders have some other options for trades before the Oct. 30 trade deadline. Let’s look at five of them:
S Karl Joseph
The Raiders reportedly have been shopping the 2016 first-round pick, though they’re looking for a relatively high payout for someone who has underwhelmed since leaving West Virginia University. He has a hamstring injury, but even when healthy, Joseph was the Raiders’ No. 4 safety behind Marcus Gilchrist, Reggie Nelson and Erik Harris.
Joseph has talent and big-hit ability, but it’s possible the Raiders will take an offer for him before the deadline. He actually might be the most likely player to be dealt, especially if he’s healthy enough to play Sunday against the Indianapolis Colts.
CB Rashaan Melvin
The veteran voiced his frustrations after being benched in a loss to the Seattle Seahawks, and he has struggled to master techniques preferred by Raiders defensive coaches. Gruden responded critically in public.
Melvin is on a one-year deal, could be down on the depth chart and isn’t likely part of a long-term Raiders plan. A cornerback-hungry team might want someone who was solid as a Colt in 2017, and the Raiders could give younger players experience using snaps previously earmarked for Melvin.
DE Bruce Irvin
The veteran edge rusher is scheduled to make $8 million this year and $9 million the next, and his role has been reduced as the season has worn on. He’s primarily a situational pass rusher at this stage, and could find a home on a team needing someone who can get after the quarterback.
Irvin also could fit in quickly elsewhere, given the nature of his position. He might not fetch much, but he could work as a rental for a team that easily can cut him in the offseason.
CB Gareon Conley
The Ohio State product was benched last week for Daryl Worley, but he has great talent with some fixable flaws in his game. He’s under control for up to three more seasons, and could fetch a decent pick if the Raiders are ready to part with him.
NFL Network reported the Raiders would like to continue working with him for another year at least, but anything’s possible for the right price.