Was Richard Seymour era a success?

December, 27, 2012
12/27/12
6:25
PM ET
Richard Seymour -- who will be remembered as one of Al Davis’ last, wild shots at greatness for his franchise -- is likely done with the Silver and Black.

Seymour
Seymour
The Oakland Raiders put the defensive tackle on the injured reserve Thursday because of a hamstring injury that has kept him out of the past seven games. Seymour’s contract will void after the season, and he will be a free agent. There is still $5.26 million in bonus proration remaining that will count against Oakland’s salary cap.

Seymour has said he would entertain coming back to Oakland but, he will exercise his rights as a free agent. He is 33, and because the Raiders want to get younger on defense, I’m not sure Oakland would be all that interested in bringing him back at a premium.

Thus, the four-year Seymour era is probably a wrap in Oakland.

While Seymour did help the Raiders at points, it’s difficult to say the trade for Seymour was a success, simply because he didn’t help the Raiders become a winner. Davis shocked the NFL when he traded for Seymour totally out of the blue a week before the 2009 season started. The Raiders gave up their No.1 pick in the 2011 draft for Seymour.

Seymour was a big part of the Patriots’ Super Bowl years, and he was a dominant player in his prime. It was the type of a deal a team makes if it is just a player way from contending. The Raiders needed more than Seymour. He was never that final piece in Oakland.

The Raiders are 25-38 since making the trade, and they paid Seymour more than $40 million in salary and bonuses in his four seasons. He was a good player in first two seasons in Oakland, but started to slow down last season. This season was all but wiped out because of injuries. Seymour never changed the culture of the defense like the team had hoped.

It’s difficult to say the trade didn’t work for the Patriots. They have remained a winner without Seymour, and they have one of the best young left tackles in the NFL in Nate Solder, who was taken with the pick New England received for Seymour.

In the end, Seymour will be remembered for being a good Raider, a tough Raider. But the bottom line is the money and draft pick spent on Seymour didn’t net enough in terms of victories.

Bill Williamson | email

ESPN Oakland Raiders reporter

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