Oakland making bold moves to improve

Say what you want about Al Davis but the Raiders owner isn't letting anything, not even money, slow his parade this offseason.

Davis continues to spend money around at a dizzying rate and doesn't appear to be finished. All indications are that the Raiders -- who are finalizing a trade with Atlanta for cornerback DeAngelo Hall -- will continue to pursue help through additional free agency moves and fully intend on holding onto their No. 4 overall pick in next month's draft.

Hall was in California on Wednesday working out the final details on a contract with Oakland that could pay him as much as $70 million. The two-time Pro Bowl cornerback will join safety Gibril Wilson as the two newest starters in Oakland's secondary. Cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha, who was slapped with the franchise tag while his agent and the Raiders work on a long-term deal, and safety Michael Huff are the lone holdovers.

Shoring up the secondary was a chief concern for Davis, who saw the Raiders go from having the No. 1-ranked pass defense in 2006 to one that dipped to eighth overall in 2007 while giving up 195.8 yards a game.

There were reports on NFL Network earlier this week that the deal between the Falcons and Raiders might be dead but Hall told an Atlanta newspaper the two sides were close .

"There is just some tweaking of the language that has to be done, some minor details," Hall told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "No deal breakers."

Oakland will reportedly give up its second- and sixth-round draft choices this year in order to get Hall.

Having already given $55 million to wide receiver Javon Walker, $50.5 million to defensive lineman Tommy Kelly, $39 million to Wilson, $12 million to running back Justin Fargas, $9.8 million for the franchise tag on Asomugha, the Raiders have committed more than $166 million to a handful of players.

Most of that money is back loaded, meaning Oakland has an easy out should it choose to do so. But Walker, Wilson and Kelly all received fat signing bonuses and there are concerns about the effects Walker and Hall -- two very outspoken players in the past -- will have on the locker room.

Still, it's an encouraging sign to see the front office so active after all the turmoil earlier in the offseason.


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