The Las Vegas Raiders were reportedly prepared to move on from four of their five starting offensive linemen this offseason, but they found a way to get some return on their investments. Instead of releasing star center Rodney Hudson, the Raiders found a trade partner to work with, and also found a way to bring back a couple of offensive guards.
According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Raiders are trading Hudson and a seventh-round pick to the Arizona Cardinals for a third-round pick. On Tuesday, Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported that the Raiders were releasing Hudson, which was a very unexpected move. Hudson is a three-time Pro Bowler and was named second-team All-Pro in 2019. Just two years ago, the Raiders made him the highest-paid center in the league! With his talent, it's no surprise that multiple teams were interested in acquiring him, so a deal was quickly agreed to with the Cardinals. This may not be the only trade the Raiders pull off in the near future, as Schefter reports that Vegas is also having trade discussions regarding starting offensive guard Gabe Jackson, who was also expected to be released.
Additionally, the Raiders are returning a starting offensive guard that was thought to be gone for good. Just minutes after the Hudson trade was reported, offensive guard Richie Incognito announced via Twitter that he would be staying in Las Vegas for 2021. Incognito was released earlier this month, but has apparently agreed to a new deal with the Raiders. He played in just two games last season due to injuries, but should return to the starting lineup in 2021.
Rapoport also reported on Wednesday that Las Vegas had re-signed offensive lineman Denzelle Good to a two-year deal. Good started in 14 games last season, but even with his and Incognito's return, it will be hard to cover the other losses on the offensive line. The Raiders traded offensive tackle Trent Brown to the New England Patriots, and as we mentioned, will be without Jackson and Hudson next season. At least the Raiders are going to be able to get something in return instead of just cutting ties with solid players.