Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie is taking his talents to Oakland, where Jon Gruden is putting together the best 2008 roster ever.
It appears Oakland Raiders head coach John Gruden is on a mission. Gruden has signed Doug Martin, Leon Hall, and Jordy Nelson: ages 29, 33 and 33, this offseason as a way to provide a veteran presence in the Raiders locker room. Recently, Gruden has signed a veteran but aging cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. While Cromartie is a good signing in terms of veteran leadership, should his age (32) be a concern for the Raiders in the future?
While it’s worth betting on, Cromartie brings experience, but older legs with him to Oakland. But it appears Gruden is expecting for the durability of Rodgers-Cromartie to make an impact in the long run for the Raiders.
Consider: Rodgers-Cromartie, who is entering his 11th NFL season after playing the previous four seasons for the New York Giants, following previous stops with the Denver Broncos, Philadelphia Eagles and Arizona Cardinals, has played in fewer than 15 games just once in his career, when he appeared in 13 games for the Eagles in 2011.
Another note to consider; the Raiders cornerbacks, 2017 first round draft pick Gareon Conley and Rashaan Melvin have had their careers so far plagued by injuries. As aforementioned, Rodgers-Cromartie has only missed fewer than 15 games once in his career. So while the two-time Pro Bowler is getting older, his durability may have been key to Gruden signing him.
In the end, Gruden has 10 years and 100 million reasons to gamble. Not many are expecting him to succeed due to being out of the game for ten years, so it’s reasonable as to why Gruden is signing players he wants and doing things his way. We will have to wait and see if it pays off.