Veteran defensive end Frostee Rucker agreed to a one-year deal with the Oakland Raiders, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported on Monday.
Rucker appeared in 16 games for the Arizona Cardinals in 2017, making 29 combined tackles and 1.5 sacks. According to Schefter, Rucker settled on the Raiders because he wanted to join a franchise that can contend for a Super Bowl title.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal’s Michael Gehlken reported Rucker’s deal with the Raiders is basically completed, and he’ll join the team Tuesday for the start of minicamp.
Signing Rucker will be the third notable addition Oakland has made at defensive end. The Raiders also signed Tank Carradine to a one-year deal and selected Arden Key in the third round of the 2018 NFL draft.
The 6’3″, 280-pounder won’t unseat three-time Pro Bowler Khalil Mack, and Bruce Irvin’s eight sacks were second-highest on the team.
Being a rotation option rather than a regular starter would suit Rucker better, considering he turns 35 in September. The California native was the 32nd-best 3-4 defensive end out of 40 players in Bleacher Report’s year-end rankings.
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The move continues a trend for the Raiders that’s been apparent ever since Jon Gruden took over of the team pursuing veteran players on short-term deals. The Raiders will be hoping Rucker still has something left in the tank at age 34, and will be able to help a defense that has been one of the league’s worst units the past couple years.
Rucker was originally selected by the Bengals in the third round of the 2006 NFL Draft. He was in Cincinnati for five seasons, tallying seven sacks and 105 total tackles in 53 games. Rucker also played one season with the Browns in 2012.
After a playoff appearance in 2016 the Raiders finished 2017 with a 6-10 record. Oakland fired former coach Jack Del Rio and replaced him with Jon Gruden, who signed a reported 10-year, $100 million contract in January.
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