Jackson part of Raiders GM search party a dicey proposition


Jackson part of Raiders GM search party a dicey proposition

ALAMEDA -- If Hue Jackson was Nino Brown in the courtroom scene of "New Jack City," taking just about everyone associated with him down with him following Sunday's playoff-extinguishing loss to San Diego, he was a more cool, calm, collected and, yes, calculated customer the day after.Jackson's rage had slowed to a simmer as he spoke for 35 minutes in his season-ended media conference.Oh, be sure, he was still seething, but Jackson was not throwing players or coordinators under the bus and then driving over them himself on Monday. And he had not relieved defensive coordinator Chuck Bresnahan of his dutiesyet."The year is over now," Jackson said, "now I can tell you what I really feel, and what's really on my mind."Meaning everything he said to reporters and, by extension, the paying fans, all season long was hogwash?Maybe not, but you get the drift. Because of course Jackson's message to his team has a different face than the one he wears in public. It should.And since we're being honest now, I asked Jackson if he would be involved in the search for a new general manager, and if it would be awkward, considering he would essentially be helping in the hiring of his new boss."I don't know that," Jackson said. "But I don't think it would be awkward. I'm pretty comfortable with who I am and what I am. I'm not going to get caught up in who we hire and who we bring in here. I know how that works. I know when people mention that, 'Well, if they hire a G.M., then he's going to want to bring in his own head coach.'"And hey, if that's what Mark (Davis) decided to do, that's his right. I don't think that that's the case, but that is his right. But at the end of the day, whoever comes here, I think it's going to be somebody who wants to share the same vision as a I do, which is winning a championship, which is getting the organization back to being better than average. Because we should be, and we can be."Asked then if he's already been a part of the conversation, Jackson said there has been some talk."But we haven't said exactly who, what, when, where and how," Jackson said. "But I do know that there's going to be somebody that we do bring in here and talk to and do those things with. But we haven't just nailed it down or anything like that."Asked again if he's part of the process, Jackson answered, "I think I will be. But how involved, I don't know that. I mean, I think (Mark Davis will) let me know that as we move forward."It might be a dicey proposition, though, with Jackson already expressing that he will have an even bigger role in the entire organization next year, and a new G.M. probably wanting to put his own stamp on things. The two personalities must mesh. At least in the beginning.Meh...just another day in the new "HueJack City."

Raiders fire defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr.


Raiders fire defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr.

Ken Norton Jr.'s time with the Raiders is up.

With the team underperforming, Oakland has fired Norton as the defensive coordinator, the team announced Tuesday afternoon. John Pagano will handle the play calling duties when the Raiders take on the Broncos this Sunday.

Head coach Jack Del Rio issued the following statement regarding the news:

“After careful thought, I have made a difficult decision to part ways with Ken Norton, Jr. as defensive coordinator. I have the utmost respect for Ken as a person and as a coach, but I feel that moving John Pagano into the play-calling role will best utilize his wealth of experience. I appreciate Ken’s passion and commitment to the Raiders since coming aboard and wish him the best going forward.”

The Raiders defense under Norton this season ranks 26th in the NFL in yards allow per game (367.0), is allowing 24.7 points per game and has yet to record an interception through 10 games.

"We played under our talent level. Those things come with consequences," defensive lineman Justin Ellis told reporters shortly after the news broke.

"The axe fell on all of us. We love Coach Norton. We didn’t want to see this happen," safety Reggie Nelson said.

Norton joined Del Rio's staff prior to the 2015 season.

Raiders will face a familiar foe calling plays for Broncos


Raiders will face a familiar foe calling plays for Broncos

ALAMEDA – The Denver Broncos shook up their coaching staff prior to Sunday’s game with the Raiders, firing offensive coordinator Mike McCoy and promoting quarterbacks coach Bill Musgrave to that spot.

The name should sound familiar to anyone who doesn’t suffer Dory-style short-term memory loss. Musgrave was the Raiders offensive coordinator in 2015 and 2016 and introduced a system still used in these parts, to far greater effect.

Musgrave orchestrated the No. 6-ranked offense last year, with 120 rushing yards and 253 passing yards per game. They were seventh with 26 points per game.

Head coach Jack Del Rio still decided to let Musgrave’s contract expire. The two didn’t always agree, and the Raiders chose to keep the coveted Downing in house with a promotion.

The offense has not maintained previous course.

All those numbers are down under new coordinator Todd Downing, largely operating with the same talent base plus receiving tight end Jared Cook.

They’re averaging 50 less yards and 5.5 fewer points, thus far.

Del Rio was asked on his 95.7-FM radio show whether he regretting making the switch. His answer was swift and direct.

“No, I do not,” Del Rio said. “And I wish (Musgrave) the best this week. Really, I do.”

Del Rio doesn’t wish him too well heading into an important matchup at Oakland Coliseum. The Broncos offense has struggled mightily this season, and will go with 2016 first-round pick Paton Lynch for the first time this season.

Del Rio insists the Raiders are going up against the system, not the new (yet familiar) play caller.

“You can’t change dramatically what you’ve done with your system in Week 12 or Week 13,” Del Rio said. “We’ll prepare ourselves and be ready to go against the system. Understand that there may be some things that Bill likes a little more than what Mike might do.”

The Raiders know Musgrave well and vice versa, which should make for an intriguing chess match at Oakland Coliseum.