The Oakland Raiders have cut ties with David Amerson, first reported by Field Yates of ESPN.
Following a disappointing two seasons in Washington as a second-round pick in 2013, the Oakland Raiders claimed David Amerson off of waivers after Week 2 of the 2015 NFL season. And now after three seasons in Silver and Black, his time in Oakland has come to an end.
First reported by Field Yates of ESPN and later announced by the team, Reggie McKenzie and the Raiders have decided to release Amerson from his contract. Amerson still had three years $21.38M left on his deal, and releasing him saves $6M in 2018 cap space with no dead money per Over The Cap.
He was viewed coming out of the draft as a prospect with an impressive size and speed combination, but in need of plenty of refinement to be successful. He didn’t live up to his second-round draft slot in Washington, so Oakland took a gamble on the 23-year old early in the 2015 season.
Amerson was a pleasant surprise for the Raiders in the beginning, as he enjoyed a breakout season following the fresh start.
Per Sporting Charts, Amerson finished the 2015 season tied for the NFL lead in passes defensed with 26, alongside Marcus Peters. He filled a major void for the team at cornerback, and considering his young age, there was optimism that McKenzie had just landed a gem on the waiver wire.
But Amerson regressed in a big way in 2016, routinely getting beat and giving up numerous big plays. His aggressive play style still earned him his fair share of pass breakups, but his gambles were increasingly not paying off and it led to plenty of ugly moments.
In 2017, the hope was that Amerson would regain his 2015 form. But his poor play continued early in the year, and injuries allowed him to only appear in six games on the season.
With first-round pick Gareon Conley also out for most of the season, the injuries between the two cornerbacks forced Dexter McDonald and others into larger roles, and the secondary suffered as a result. The Raiders set an NFL record for longest interception drought in league history, and Sean Smith was the first cornerback on the team to record an interception — snagging two against the Cowboys in Week 15.
With more than $21M and three years left on his deal, the writing was on the wall for Amerson. His release should come as a shock to no one in Raider Nation, as either poor play or poor health had plagued his last two seasons.
Sean Smith is also expected to be on the way out, and T.J. Carrie is an unrestricted free agent. That could potentially leave Gareon Conley, Dexter McDonald and Antonio Hamilton as the CBs under contract for 2018. So expect this position to be addressed in both free agency and the draft this offseason.