Raiders’ release of punter Marquette King a perplexing move

In perhaps the most shocking move of the Oakland Raiders’ busy offseason, the team released popular and productive punter Marquette King, whose social media presence was just as large as his punts were booming.

In announcing the release Friday, nfl wholesale jerseys the Raiders did not offer a reason, though there had been whispers that perhaps returning coach Jon Gruden’s decidedly old-school ways might not have jibed with King’s larger-than-life personality, especially for a punter.

But technically, Gruden was not allowed to meet with King to talk about football matters until April 9, so he could not have asked King about his antics, both on (a punter picking up unsportsmanlike penalties?) and off (his posing with Aqib Talib at the 2017 Pro Bowl to reenact Talib’s first chain-snatching episode with Michael Crabtree did not sit well in the Raiders’ locker room) the field.

Financially speaking, cutting King, who originally signed with Oakland as an undrafted free agent in 2012, saves the Raiders $2.85 million in salary-cap space for 2018. He was due base salaries of $2.9 million, $2.8 million and $2.75 million the next three seasons.

Already the most fit punter in the NFL, King was also coming into his own booting the ball, increasing his hang time to the occasional 4.9 seconds, flipping the field and pinning opponents against their own end zone.

Last season, Pro Football Focus ranked him third among all punters, and he finished third in the NFL in net punting average at 42.7 yards.

And since 2013, when he took over for Shane Lechler in Oakland, King is second in the league in that time frame in total punts (426), eighth in gross average (46.8 yards), eighth in net average (40.8), third in punts inside the 20-yard line (168) and first in punts inside the 10-yard line (65).

The lone punter on the Raiders’ roster now is Colby Wadman, who last played at UC Davis in 2016 and was in the Raiders’ rookie minicamp last spring.

And as Pro Football Focus notes, of the 32 punters to play at least 15 games last season, nfl jerseys from china Brad Wing is the only one not retired and not signed. He earned PFF’s worst overall grade for punters in 2017, when he averaged 44.1 yards per punt for the New York Giants.