On a conference call with media members on Sunday, Las Vegas Raiders general manager Mike Mayock said the Lynn Bowden Jr. trade had nothing to do with off-the-field issues.
When the Las Vegas Raiders 53 man roster was announced on Saturday, one shocking development was the Lynn Bowden Jr. trade. The 2020 third-round draft pick of the Raiders was one of the more hyped picks after April’s NFL Draft. The versatile wide receiver and quarterback would be switched again to running back in Jon Gruden’s heavy ball control offense.
Yet, Bowden never made it to a game in the silver and black as the team traded him to Miami for a fourth-round draft pick next spring.
Rumors and reports of the Lynn Bowden Jr. trade being linked to the players activity off the field were rampant since the startling trade with the player even denying the reports on his Twitter account.
“It was a football decision only,” Mayock said emphatically Sunday afternoon. “Character off the field – the kid did absolutely nothing wrong. We did all our homework on the kid – off the field.”
In a written piece by The Athletic’s Vic Tafur, Bowden had allegedly been enjoying his newfound wealth a bit much which may have distracted him a bit from the job at hand.
“Some at the team facility thought the rookie was more concerned with picking up new cars than the playbook, and on the field Bowden looked measured and not explosive,” Tafur said. “On top of a lack of breakaway speed, he was always getting blasted when it was his turn to pass block.”
Despite those reports, Mayock said Bowden showed up and worked hard every day and did what was asked of him, but he just didn’t do it well enough to be a part of the Raiders future plans.
“He worked his tail off, he came to work every day,” Mayock said of Bowden. “He was not able to play today at the level expected.”
The loss of a third-round draft pick, one player picked just ahead of fellow third-rounder Bryan Edwards who will start for Las Vegas in Carolina this week, is a mulligan for Mayock who said all responsibility for the miss lies with him.
“Again, it’s 100% on me,” Mayock said.
The Lynn Bowden Jr. trade aside, the Raiders have enjoyed recent success under Mayock when it comes to draft players in the middle rounds. Including this year’s big get in Edwards, Mayock also drafted defensive end Maxx Crosby in the 2019 draft in the fourth round. Crosby had 10 sacks and was a finalist for AFC Defensive Rookie of the Year last season.