Raiders: Fresh air blowing through Oakland with McKenzie hiring

Someone didn’t just open the window and plug in a deodorant. Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis opened the door, brought in a cleaning crew and now there’s sense of fresh air in the organization.

That one-man cleaning crew is Reggie McKenzie, and he was introduced today as general manager of the Silver and Black.

His first order of business was to relieve Hue Jackson of his duties as head coach.

Was it the right move?

If McKenzie wants complete power and control over his roster… if McKenzie wants to put a stamp on this club and bring in a new era of Raider football – yes, it was absolutely the correct move.

“Number. one, I want my guy. Everything is based on performance,” McKenzie said. “But I go with my gut a lot, so when it’s time to make the final call, my gut is going to tell me one thing. When I met, interviewed, with Mr. Davis, Mark told me the general manager would have the power to hire and fire the coach. Recently I let him know that I would like to move on from coach Jackson and began my search for a new coach — and he was OK with that.”

That sign shows the shift of power structure in the organization. No longer will an owner be the end all, be all. There is a general manager now, who has a sense of what modern day football operations looks like and more importantly, will make the decisions based on what the team needs, in cohesion with the coach, who then in turn will be allowed to run whatever is needed to get wins.

It’s not strictly about the vertical game anymore. It’s just not about getting players who run the fastest or look good in pads, or that may have a highly decorated past.

“The legacy of the Raiders is steeped in tradition but with all things there comes a time when change is necessary and for the Raiders, that time is now,” McKenzie said. “The Raiders organization, with respect and deference to all its tradition and history, is about to embark on a new era.”

What fans have wanted for a long time…

Change, a new sense of hope and not being stuck on traditions – embracing the past yes, but getting a sense of forward movement… the Raiders now have that.

Jackson tried to move Oakland forward, but at this point, he’s just collateral damage… a necessary casualty that just shows how much the organization has changed since the passing of Al Davis.

The outgoing coach took over a team that Tom Cable got back to respectability. Jackson could not go any further, and regardless of injuries or what other unfortunate circumstances he had, with McKenzie’s grasp of power came at an unfortunate time for him.

So here we are…

McKenzie has begun search for a new head coach. Mark Davis has released all control of the football side to one man. And just like Al Davis would’ve done, McKenzie will do it his way.



Author: Staff Writer

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