Dr. J's Mailbox 03/03/03

Weighing in on the issues that matter, Rodney Harrison in Oakland, what Michael Vick brings to the free agency recruiting table and more...<br><br> Thanks to all writing in, if you have not seen your letter, it may be on tap for next week...Now on to the letters...

Correct me if I am wrong and please advise based on your knowledge but I think there may be a correction for your response to the Raider fan and the salary cap under the DR. J Mailbox section of the Chargers Insider. From reading Clayton and Pasquarelli on ESPN.com, it is my understanding that the Raiders do not have to do anything with Darrell Russell unless the NFL reinstates him as a player following suspension. Therefore, for the Raiders, it is better to keep him suspended as he does not then count against the salary cap and they do not have to cut him or clear his salary - it is just not "on the books". The real problem for the Raiders exists if the league were to reinstate -- either before or after June 1. If reinstated before June 1, the Raiders have an immediate $6.6m hit to the cap they would need to clear and after June 1, the cap hit would fall to $3.3m.

So, for Charger fans everywhere and Raider haters too, lets hope Darryl Russell has cleaned up his act and is reinstated April 1 by Paul Tagliabue (or as I call him with his Overtime proposals - Paul Taglia-an Idiot) and totally jacks with an already dicey Raider salary cap problem. Lets also hope Russell is clean and wants to play for his hometown team --with a dirt cheap contract.

Thanks, Bob

Looks like you are correct. The Raiders are only responsible for Russell's prorated bonus this season and not for his entire salary until (or at this moment, unless) he is reinstated. That might explain how the Raiders were able to get under the salary cap as relatively easily as they did. As for Russell playing here in San Diego, chances are slim and none. Russell is a bad guy and doesn't fit the high character player John Butler and Marty Schottenheimer want on this team. Besides that, he's got quite a bit of rust and baggage on him that makes me seriously doubt he will ever be an effective player again.

What exactly is going on in Chargerland? John Butler has let go of the team's heart and soul, Rodney Harrison, and now the team's best receiver, Curtis Conway. Is this Bobby Beathard revisited?

Ted in Santee

I know that it's frustrating to see some very good players go Ted, but the reality was this. Conway wasn't worth what he and his agent were asking for because of his prone to injury. Harrison had lost a step and like it or not, had become less effective because of the fines levied against him and his style of play. It's hard to spend money on players with that kind of question marks surrounding them and the Chargers need to make sure that their money is better spent.

What is your feeling on Rodney Harrison or any other recently cut Bolt possibly going to Oakland? Also are certain players chomping at the bit just to be able to play with Michael Vick in Atlanta? Would that have possibly meant we could be securing the best free agents available, had we not traded him away, with just his mere presence? Money aside, he has to be one of the best tools to gain an advantage in free agency during the courting process. Thanks and I love your column.

Denis in SD

Thanks for your compliments Denis. I'd hate to see Harrison go to the Raiders and although his style play would fit them perfectly, I don't think they will pick him up because he will not help them. He was cut from San Diego for a reason and that reason was a lack of closing speed. The Raiders need to get younger and faster in the secondary. If he were to go anywhere, I would expect him to go to Atlanta.

Speaking of which, I would guess players like David Boston or Peerless Price would love to play for Atlanta simply because wide receivers would be the ones to benefit most from playing with Vick. As for other players, putting money aside of course, I would guess that many look for that ring or a place where they are guaranteed some playing time. Atlanta is tempting for many, but if I were Emmitt Smith, I might look to go there. They are a steady running game away from being very, very good.

Where do you get off on telling Raider fan learn how to spell when you can't write an article correctly. Yes , I found many errors in your Dr. J's Mailbox article. Mostly grammatical errors, but a couple spelling errors as well. So instead of insulting raider fans about our spelling, maybe you should learn how to use the grammar and spell check on your program you use to spew out the crap you put out on the internet. Good day.

Ed - Fremont, Ca.

ps. I know you won't post this, cause you are a coward!

I guess you and your sentence fragments and the use of the word "cause" instead of "because" really showed me didn't it? Of course, I would write you back with a couple of English lessons, but you failed to leave me your e-mail address.

Some of you members of the Raider Nation are really making it easy…

Also check out Recent Envelopes in the Mailbox:

Mailbox for the week of February 24th

Mailbox for the week of February 17th

Mailbox for the week of February 10th

Mailbox for the week of February 3rd

Thanks to all writing in, please feel free to drop me a line regarding any matter, and your comments could be the next ones published. Please make sure to leave your name and city of residence so we can accurately credit your questions.

Dr. J answers readers' questions in his weekly column exclusively at Chargers Update. He can be reached at charmeljun@hotmail.com and welcome letters of any kind from fans of any team. Dr. J can also be reached via the following link: Dr. J's Mailbox

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