Dec 30, 2012; San Diego, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders tackle Jared Veldheer (68) during the third quarter against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

NFL Rumors: Oakland Raiders don't franchise Jared Veldheer or Lamarr Houston

The Oakland Raiders were hopeful they’d be able to reach contract extensions with Jared Veldheer and Lamarr Houston before today’s franchise tag deadline, but they were unable to find a middle ground with either player.

Given that – they’d likely have the franchise tag placed on them, right? Wrong.

Both Veldheer and Houston were left untagged, allowing each to enter the free agent market.

Despite the most salary cap room in the NFL, the Raiders declined to use the franchise tag Monday on either left tackle Jared Veldheer or defensive end Lamarr Houston.

When the 1 p.m. deadline (PST) came and went, Veldheer and Houston were five days away from being able to negotiate with other teams for their services.

Both Veldheer and Houston can still work out a deal with the Raiders, so by no stretch are they assured of leaving – though the option is presented now given the lack of a tag.

Many expected the Raiders to use the tag (especially on Veldheer) given they have an absurdly large amount of cap space, but it wasn’t to be. It’s possible general manager Reggie McKenzie is confident he’ll be able to re-sign both players without the tag, though that’s a pretty ballsy move.

Tags: Jared Veldheer Lamarr Houston Oakland Raiders

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