Here is the opening to my Tuesday column about Rolando McClain, apparently a gunslinger.

The Raiders should flee from Rolando McClain.

As you surely know, a judge in Alabama recently convicted McClain, the Raiders’ first-round draft pick in 2010, on four misdemeanors. They are third-degree assault, menacing, reckless endangerment and discharging a firearm in city limits. If McClain serves the time, he will be in jail 180 days and would miss all of next season.

The conviction stems from a fight McClain had last November when he left the Raiders and went home for his grandfather’s funeral. While in Alabama, he did more than attend the funeral and deal with his grief. He goaded one friend to fight another friend and is alleged to have fired a gun near the head of one friend after making him beg for his life. The judge clearly believes that’s what McClain did.

To read the full column, please click here.

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  1. B-Rad

    And who, in the state of Alabama who might be on the jury, hasn’t seen the
    arrest photo of McClain gleefully grinning away as he’s being handcuffed?
    What fun he’s having – this mental giant happily pounding the
    final spike into his coffin.

    May 21st, 2012 9:31 pm

  2. Capts

    I am inclined to agree with you, Lowell. It’s just a shame a seemingly talented young guy is going to blow this opportunity. Not to mention this leaves a huge hole in the Raider’s defense (it’s already swiss cheese like.) An average defense is all the Raiders will need with their offense being more than capable. Nine years, man, can’t anything go right for the Raiders anymore?

    May 21st, 2012 10:08 pm

  3. chris

    of course Lowell, its easy to say the Raiders should dump McClain for the reason’s you gave. But there’s many reasons why they shouldn’t. Sure he showed violent behavior in this incident. But alot of NFL players come from violent surroundings…….Patrick Willis and Vernon Davis to mention a few. Although they haven’t appeared to of done anything as bad as McMlain, Davis did act idiotic in the title game vs. the Giants by standing on the camera support acting like an arrogant thug, and then atacking a Giants player by jumping on his back. Bad behavior but the 49ers wont dump him for that even though they should if you want good character guys on your team like you say. McClain has been paid alot of money and was a very high draft choice and like the S.F. Giants hanging onto Barry Zito, you dont want to waste all of that and hope to get at least some value from the guy. Also since Reggie McKenzie played McClain’s same LB position on a very tough and violent 1985 Raider defense he might be a guy that can help McClain get his head together.

    May 22nd, 2012 7:41 am

  4. Stan

    I never thought the day would come when pro sports GM’s would talk about having a higher character as a criteria. But Meyers for the Warriors and McKenzie have used that in making changes.
    Without the sexual harassment (and what was the result of that?) Ellis might still be here..it was a factor in the Ellis or Curry, choose one to be traded.
    McClain is another younger who thinks they can take what they want,do what they want, and no consequences. Wait until he gets the bill for the trial is just one reality he faces.
    Worse-he’s not very good. So,why would the Raiders keep him if he’s a drag on the team?…He’s not long for Oakland.

    May 22nd, 2012 8:36 am

  5. Tiburon Dave

    Dump him now…don’t even have him to OTA’s.

    When changing an organization you only get a short window to make a statement.

    Rolando just gave Reggie the perfect opportunity to do so.

    May 22nd, 2012 8:44 am

  6. MJ

    Chris…Are you really comparing a celebratory pose in a football game vs a guy carrying a loaded hand gun, involved in a violent altercation and allegedly firing off the handgun? Davis celebrating doesn’t make him a thug, he’s anything but.

    And what violent surroundings did Willis come from? Is it cause he comes from the south? Did you know he lived with his high school basketball coach for the last 2 years of high school?

    Secondly, as far as I’ve heard, cutting McClain would actually SAVE the raiders 1.5 million against the cap. The difference between Zito, whose contract is guaranteed, and McClain is just that….guaranteed pay, as well as the amount of it.

    Should McClain be cut? Who cares. Cut him or keep him, he’s locked up for 6 months and probably suspended 6 games minimum. Either way the Raiders are without him this season.

    May 22nd, 2012 9:10 am

  7. Fritz Q Newman, Jr. PhD

    Dilemma? What dilemma? As anybody who has watched him play knows, he’s not good enough to present a dilemma. Cut him immediately. They can find someone else to take poor angles, not honor his assignments and give up on plays.

    May 22nd, 2012 11:24 am

  8. Steve

    Not surprising that egomaniacal Hue Jackson supported this guy. Also not surprising that the first thing the new Raiders regime did was to dump Jackson. Now it’s long past time to dump McLain. Agree 100% with you, Lowell.

    May 22nd, 2012 12:06 pm

  9. mike

    Regardless of the legal implications and the appeal by McClain’s attorney, if I were the Raiders I would not invite McClain to the OTAs and other organized team activities this spring, especially if I were considering releasing him, because I don’t want an injury this spring to cost me a full season’s contract. As an example, if McClain was to blow out a knee during OTAs or other sanctioned team activitiesthis spring, the Raiders would be responsible for his 2012 season’s salary because he would be on IR due to his inability to play. If McClain’s attorney subsequently was to lose his appeal to overturn McClain’s 180-day jail sentence or lose a jury trial, ironically McClain could receive his full 2012 salary even though he could be behind bars because the injury occurred during the spring and before the Raiders took any action to isolate and separate McClain from team events.

    On the other hand, in the past, players, such as Ray Lewis of the Ravens, have had some very questionable public behavior resulting in some strong suspicions, yet, have walked away without so much as a slap on the wrist.

    Bottom line is that the Raiders have a decision to make regarding McClain that falls back on whether he can play and contribute significantly as a Mike LBer.

    If they think he can play at the level of their expectations, then the next step is for the club to determine whether they want him and his baggage.

    May 22nd, 2012 1:07 pm

  10. turd tupperville

    OK, he did it! Even his co-defendent, Jaradious Somebody, pled guilty and
    said McClain did it. But can’t we have some pity for this guy?
    Consider that his attorney said “(This verdict) is meaningless, we get a
    jury trial.”
    That’s $300,000 in the attorney’s pocket.
    His victim, Rishard Tapscott has already filed a civil suit. That’s $3,000,000
    for him.
    Plus another $300,000 to McClain’s attorney.
    Plus McClain misses this years’ pay at the very least.
    According to ‘Sports Illustrated’, “78% of former NFL players are broke
    or financially stressed after retirement, and 60% of former NBA players
    go broke five years after retiring.”
    And if he comes out of this with money, he’ll lose it to a wife who
    leaves him, girlfriends who hit him with child support (or both),
    his lawyer again, his posse, bad investments………………..
    The bottom line is: WHEN DUMB PEOPLE HAVE MONEY, SMART
    PEOPLE GET IT FROM THEM. Is this sad? It depends on whether
    you’re a dumb person with money. This guy is; at the moment.

    May 22nd, 2012 1:19 pm

  11. Stan

    I’ve said it before but..it’s a head scratcher Hue wasn’t snapped up by another team to be OC. He was signed by the Raiders because of his offense..and he delivered. The other head scratcher is that Hue himself sold cheap as some assistant for the Bengals. He could have waited being he got all that Raider money. Even that he was so loyal to Al..over the top loyal…didn’t help?..Must be that no rehired Black HC thing at work here..

    May 22nd, 2012 2:25 pm

  12. Tiburon Dave

    Looks like we’re all wrong…

    Just heard the Raider coach on KCBS…Rolando is “Part of the Family”

    He went on to say that the Raider players know what is expected of the new Raider standard of conduct.

    Apparently holding a gun to another man’s head and firing the gun alongside that head is acceptable to the ‘New Raiders’

    Same as it ever was…

    May 22nd, 2012 3:07 pm

  13. Stan

    He’s part of the family like Ralph was apart of the KNBR family…if he doesn’t produce EARLY in the season,they will get rid of him.
    Right now his status as a high Raider draft pick is what makes the Raiders call him family. He’s more Manson family.

    May 22nd, 2012 4:45 pm

  14. Frank in Minnesota

    Besides not being a very good player, this guy is bad news…why would anyone want this kind of player in their locker room? Well, maybe the Bengals…..

    May 22nd, 2012 4:58 pm

  15. loneraider78

    I think there’s plenty of reasons to show this guy the door. His lack of production, the money they could save, oh and the image thing.

    But make no mistake, it IS a new era in Oakland. If McClain stays then obviously they think they can work with him. And I think, as young as Rolando is, a guy like McKenzie or Allen can help him become a better player/man.

    If LT had had all the troubles he’s had post NFL during his career do you think the Giants would’ve given up on him?

    Not saying McClain can be that good, but LB is a serious weak spot, and if it weren’t he’d probably be gone already.

    May 24th, 2012 1:31 pm

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