The Raiders gave Trent Brown a huge check to come play in Oakland in 2019.
In fact, the four-year deal to the former New England left tackle could be worth as much as $66 million – just $12 million less than what the Patriots have committed in contracts to their entire offensive line.
It’s the kind of contract usually given to elite left tackles in the NFL, but one of the interesting aspects of the deal is that Brown -- a huge blocker at 6-foot-8 -- will play right tackle for the Raiders this season.
After taking a starring role with the Patriots at left tackle – protecting Tom Brady’s blind side – he’ll travel across the continent to play right tackle, leaving second-year left tackle Kolton Miller exactly where he is to protect the blind side of Derek Carr.
Brown played right tackle with the San Francisco 49ers before going to the Patriots for one season, and that’s where head coach Jon Gruden says Brown will be for the Raiders – at least for now, as the Raiders move into a more intense phase of the offseason team program.
“We like that as a launching pad for us,” Gruden recently told reporters. “Trent played very well at right tackle for San Francisco, he played left tackle very well for New England. That gives us some versatility. That’s how we’re going to start the show.”
It seems odd, especially considering how Miller struggled on the left side in 2018, because of injuries and the usual rookie learning curve. But, as Herbie Teope of NFL.com noted, it’s a move that does make sense considering the division in which the Raiders play.
Wrote Teope: “The AFC West is home to some of the NFL’s elite pass rushers, a group that includes the Denver Broncos’ Von Miller and Bradley Chubb and the Los Angeles Chargers’ Melvin Ingram and Joey Bosa. Additionally, the Kansas City Chiefs recently traded for defensive end Frank Clark (formerly of the Seahawks).
“Of those pass rushers, Brown projects to square off two times during the regular season against Miller and Ingram, who combined for 21.5 sacks from the left defensive line in 2018.”
Brown recently thanked the Patriots and their fans on social media, saying he was thrilled to be part of a Super Bowl-winning team. But, he said, “It’s on to Oakland.”