From waving a gun to flat-out waived.
The Raiders released former 2020 first-round pick Damon Arnette on Monday, a somewhat surprising move that came in the wake of a controversial video that surfaced on the internet over the weekend.
Arnette, 25, was a 2020 first-round selection out of The Ohio State University, and multiple reports at the time indicated that he had several red flags surrounding his character. That seemed to be a prophecy fulfilled with the latest information coming out of Las Vegas.
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Raiders GM Mike Mayock commented on the release of Arnette on Monday:
#Raiders GM Mike Mayock’s opening statement:
“Today we waived Damon Anette. Very painful decision…we cannot stand for the video of Damon with a gun threatening to take a life… bottom line, the Raiders will not tolerate this behavior.” – Mayock #RaiderNation
— Cassie Soto (@_CassieSoto) November 8, 2021
“We cannot stand for the video of Damon (Arnette) with a gun threatening to take a life. … Bottom line, the Raiders will not tolerate this behavior,” Mayock said.
With this being the latest turn in an already drama-filled 2021 for Vegas, here’s the latest reason why Arnette was waived.
Why did the Raiders release Damon Arnette?
Arnette exhibited troubling character concerns as recently as the 2020 pre-draft process, but it looks like the last straw came over the weekend.
In a video posted on Instagram, Arnette was seen waving several guns at a camera and repeatedly telling the seeming recipient of said video that he will kill him.
(Editor’s note: Video contains offensive, NSFW language):
“Pull up, lame-ass n—. I swear to God, I will kill you, n—. On everything I love, I will kill you n—. You talkin’ crazy,” Arnette said in the video, while waving guns at the camera.
It wasn’t the only interaction between Arnette and his instigator on Instagram. Messages that surfaced painted a pretty nasty exchange between the Raiders player and an internet troll.
The video was certainly the tipping point for Arnette’s tenure in Las Vegas, but it wasn’t the first incident that the Raiders took issue with, per reports. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that, in Year 1, Arnette crashed four — yes, four — rental cars in the span of a month.
There were troubling off-the-field signs everywhere for #Raiders first-rounder Damon Arnette. For instance: In his first year in the NFL, Arnette crashed four rental cars within roughly a month, sources said. Now, after a tumultuous weekend including online threats, he’s out.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 8, 2021
The selection of Arnette at the time was widely panned by analysts and fans, claiming that Mayock reached for the Ohio State defensive back. In just over a year as a Raider, Arnette was problematic off and on the field: His 32.9 PFF grade was one of the worst among all cornerbacks in 2021.
Now, he’s no longer the Raiders’ problem.