Things have changed very quickly in the last couple of months for the Las Vegas Raiders.
Of course, the biggest change was the resignation of head coach Jon Gruden in the wake of a racist, homophobic, and misogynistic email scandal. The franchise still appears to be considering some kind of next steps with the NFL over how that all played out.
The team appeared to be moving forward positively on the field but some terrible news on Tuesday changed things once more. Wide receiver Henry Ruggs III killed a woman in a drunk driving accident and was charged with two felonies. The Raiders released Ruggs shortly thereafter.
Over the weekend, a video emerged of Raiders cornerback Damon Arnette making death threats against someone while carrying a gun. The video may have been related to a pair of lawsuits that Arnette is currently involved with, including an incident in which he allegedly spat on someone. It also appeared that trouble seemed to follow Arnette for a while now since joining the franchise.
There were troubling off-the-field signs everywhere for #Raiders first-rounder Damon Arnette. For instance: In his first year in the NFL, Arnette crashed four rental cars within roughly a month, sources said. Now, after a tumultuous weekend including online threats, he’s out.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 8, 2021
Arnette, who had been on injured reserve for a month, was released by the Raiders on Monday.
The Raiders had two first-round picks in 2020 and have cut them both in the last week. They also had two third-round picks in 2020 who never played a down for them. That draft was a disaster. https://t.co/4QLyOfeEYF
— Michael David Smith (@MichaelDavSmith) November 8, 2021
With that move, the Raiders have now released both of their first-round NFL Draft picks from 2020 in the span of a week. While it’s hard to argue with their recent decisions, it doesn’t help their longstanding reputation for not always putting the best work into their player drafting.
Perhaps things will calm down for the Raiders as they attempt to try to compete for the AFC West crown and a playoff spot. But it’s certainly been a traumatic ride for the franchise so far this season.