The move wasn't much of a surprise. The Raiders invested the fourth pick in the first round of the NFL draft on halfback Darren McFadden. With McFadden, Michael Bush, Justin Fargas and LaMont Jordan under contract, someone had to be the odd man out, and it turned out to be Rhodes.
The salary cap was behind Rhodes' release. When the Raiders traded cornerback Fabian Washington to Baltimore Sunday, they took a $1.093,750 cap hit, putting them over the salary cap.
Rhodes had a $1.75 million salary, enough to put the Raiders back under the cap once he was released.
Rhodes, 29, signed a two-year contract with the Raiders last year. He was suspended for four games last season for violating the league's substance-abuse policy, and ended up rushing for only 302 yards on 75 carries.
John Clayton is a senior NFL writer for ESPN.com.