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When Al Davis said goodbye to JaMarcus Russell

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

imageSports Illustrated’s L. Jon Wertheim went down to Mobile, Ala., and sat with ex-Raiders quarterback and most maligned NFL draft bust ever JaMarcus Russell. The interview, in a neighborhood barber shop, reveals an ever-hopeful Russell who, at only 26, says he wants to try an NFL comeback next year and plans to work out and take classes at LSU in the spring.

Add: As for the day Al Davis finally cut him loose (and essentially wrote-off the $39 million Russell walked away with), there’s this:

Finally in the spring of 2010, after the team had acquired [Jason] Campbell from the Redskins, Davis called Russell in and told him the Raiders were releasing him. They had already paid him $36.4 million and would owe him another $3 million. Of the meeting with Davis, Russell recalls, "He wished me the best and apologized that it came out this way. He said, 'I'm getting older, and things are getting out of my hands. I know you're going to go to another team and make me look like an ass.'"

Russell's response? "What could I say? I told him, 'Thanks for the opportunity. You blessed me, my family and a lot of other people you don't even know about.'"

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