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Oakland Raiders part ways with veterans LaMarr Woodley, Tyvon Branch

For more than a decade the three-time Super Bowl champion Oakland Raiders have been the laughing stock of the NFL. The storied franchise has struggled to rebuild after a few attempts at a fourth title with quarterback Rich Gannon under center.

Fortunately, the Raiders appear to be making the right moves in order to become a playoff contender in the near future. The last few years have been rough to say the least in Oakland with the team bringing in veterans past their prime, but this offseason may be the turning point.

With the Raiders looking to make big moves during the offseason to upgrade multiple positions, the team is parting ways with a few of the big-name veterans on the squad. Tyvon Branch and LaMarr Woodley were the latest players to be notified they’ll no longer be with the team, according to CSN Bay Area via ESPN’s Bill Williamson:

The LaMarr Woodley era in Oakland is over after a year, as expected.

Woodley has long been expected to be one of Oakland’s roster cuts. Sunday, CSN Bay Area reported he will be cut this week. Oakland will also officially cut safety Tyvon Branch as soon as Monday.

Along with potentially clearing more cap space and roster spots, the Raiders main focus will be preparing for the 2015 NFL draft. Oakland owns the fourth overall pick and may be intent on targeting a wide receiver like Kevin White (West Virginia) or Amani Cooper (Alabama) to give second-year quarterback Derek Carr a target downfield.

Not only will the Raiders be looking for a promising young wideout in the draft, but they’ll also take a flyer or two on some big names on the free agent. Randall Cobb of the Green Bay Packers has been a player mentioned as a potential target.

A few other notable players have been mentioned as potentially being in the Raiders’ crosshairs this summer. Most of these players are running backs with Adrian Peterson, DeMarco Murray and Oakland native Marshawn Lynch at the top of the list. Ndamukong Suh is also a player that been mentioned as a possible target in free agency.

As of right now, the Raiders have 200 to 1 odds to win Super Bowl 50. Obviously, with the roster the team currently has, these odds come as no surprise, but adding some big-name players in free agency will almost certainly change things for Oakland.

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