The Oakland Raiders released offensive lineman Donald Penn on Saturday, cutting ties with the longest-tenured player on their roster.
The Raiders said they came to a mutual decision to cut ties with Penn, who became expendable after Oakland signed Trent Brown to a four-year, $66 million contract this week that is the richest ever for an offensive lineman.
The Raiders drafted Kolton Miller in the first round and Brandon Parker in the third round last year, leaving little room for the 35-year-old Penn and his hefty salary.
The decision to cut ties with Penn clears nearly $5.5 million in salary cap room. The Raiders will carry a dead money charge of $1.75 million in salary that was guaranteed for this year.
"It is always hard to say goodbye to players that you respect and love both for their on-field efforts and the people that they are off the field," owner Mark Davis said in a statement. "Donald Penn is another one of those great Raiders who have come into the organization and left an indelible mark on the franchise and the Raider Nation as a whole. He came to Oakland already with a deep passion for Raiders football and served as a leader and example for the team for five memorable seasons. Donald will always be a Raider and his presence will be missed by the entire Raiders family. I wish the absolute best for Donald and his family."
Penn originally signed with Oakland as a free agent in March 2014 and was part of a roller-coaster ride during his five seasons with the team. The Raiders lost their first 10 games in Penn's first season before turning into a playoff team with 12 wins in 2016.
Penn missed the playoff game with a knee injury and then saw the Raiders slip to 6-10 in 2017, when his season ended with a foot injury in Week 15. Penn played just four games last season before a groin injury put him on IR as Oakland finished 4-12 in coach Jon Gruden's first season back.
Saints' Unger to retire
Two people familiar with the decision say New Orleans Saints Pro Bowl center and offensive captain Max Unger is retiring after 10 NFL seasons.
The people spoke to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the transaction has not been announced.
The 32-year-old Unger has been New Orleans' starting center for the past four seasons after spending his first six NFL seasons out of Oregon with Seattle.
Cardinals keep rebuilding
The Arizona Cardinals added another piece to their rebuilt offensive line, signing Max Garcia to a one-year contract.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The 27-year-old Garcia is coming off a torn ACL suffered in practice last November. He's expected to provide depth behind starting guards Justin Pugh and J.R. Sweezy if he recovers from the injury and makes the team.
Garcia played the past four seasons with the Denver Broncos, starting 41 of 57 games.
Lions sign Cooper
The Detroit Lions agreed to terms on a one-year contract with cornerback Marcus Cooper.
The move adds depth at the position bolstered by the addition of cornerback Justin Coleman in free agency earlier in the week.
Cooper closed last season with the Lions, playing in four games after appearing in two games early in the season with the Chicago Bears.