Nine potential Raiders GM candidates


Nine potential Raiders GM candidates

Green Bay director of football operations, and former Raiders linebacker, Reggie McKenzie reportedly interviewed for the vacant Raiders general manager on Wednesday. But a formal offer and acceptance cannot be made completed until after the Packers' postseason run is complete, meaning it might take until after the Super Bowl.As such, a look at nine football minds whose names have been bandied about, or are available, as the potential future Raiders G.M.

Reggie McKenzieThe seeming clubhouse leader, what with his history as a former Raiders linebacker and the purported endorsement of Ron Wolf, who has been working as an advisor behind the scenes to Mark Davis. McKenzie, who played for the Raiders from 1985 through 1988, has been in Green Bay's front office since 1994 and currently oversees the Packers' scouting of all professional football leagues and, per the team's Web Site,""is heavily involved in all of the team's moves on a daily basis, including all tryouts and transactions." He's ready to blossom and take that next step and, as a rookie G.M., would not come with an ego to clash with Hue Jackson. But as speculation has it, McKenzie might bring with him Packers assistant director of player personnel Eliot Wolf. Yes, Ron's son. And that could make Jackson twitchy.Bill PolianA six-time NFL executive of the year, Polian was let go this week by the Indianapolis Colts. He's built winners every where he's worked, from Buffalo to Carolina to Indianapolis. His reputation is one of building teams from the ground up, as he did with the Bills powerhouse of the late 80s and early 90s, the expansion Panthers, who were in the NFC title game in their second season, and, if course the Peyton Manning-led Colts. So, yeah, Polian has a rep that precedes him. But might that overshadow Jackson and create a rift between the coach, who was the de facto G.M. in the wake of Al Davis' passing, and Polian to great to bridge? And would Polian also bring his son Chris?Robert LondonWho? Exactly. But what London lacks in name recognition he more than makes up for in business acumen as one of the brightest NFL player agents out there. So bright he was rumored to be talking to the Raiders for the gig back in October. In that he's handpicked clients such as NFL leading rusher Maurice Jones-Drew of Jacksonville and Chicago's Matt Forte, London is seen as a shrewd talent evaluator. And because he's had mostly tranquil negotiations with his clients' teams, he is seen as "getting it." Of course, he'd have to divest himself of his agency to work as a G.M. But at least he knows how the other side thinks and feels.
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Eric DeCostaThe Baltimore Ravens director of player personnel is a rising star in the league's talent evaluation system. He joined the Ravens as an entry level grunt when the organization "moved" from Cleveland in 1996 and has been there ever since. Per the Ravens' Web Site, "DeCosta works with GM Ozzie Newsome to oversee both the college and pro scouting departments" and "served on the eight-member committee to interview and select Ravens head coach John Harbaugh in 2008." Then there's this: he is obviously familiar with Jackson from Jackson's tome in Baltimore as the Ravens quarterback coach.Tom GambleAs the 49ers' first year director of player personnel Gamble cut his teeth with the Niners as the director of pro personnel the previous seven years. He also has a pretty gaudy resume when it comes to helping develop playoff contending teams. In his 24-year career, Gamble has now been associated with 10 playoff teams, five in Indianapolis, four in Philadelphia and this year's 13-3 49ers team. He has a reputation as a shrewd talent evaluator when it comes to NFL free agents, which the Raiders might have to delve into with so few draft picks at their disposal at the moment.
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Les SneadA young up and coming star in talent evaluation, the former Auburn tight end in 1992-93 is in his 13th season with the Atlanta Falcons, his third as the Falcons director of player personnel. With the Falcons, he also oversees the team's college and pro scouting while playing a day-to-day role in the analysis of the team's roster while providing a salary analysis of every player acquisition. He also worked in the pro scouting department of expansion Jacksonville from 1995-97, the Jaguars going to the AFC title game in 1996. Snead is also familiar with Jackson, from his time in Atlanta as the Falcons' offensive coordinator in 2007.Scot McCloughanThe former 49ers general manager landed on his feet as the Seattle Seahawks senior personnel executive. Before his time with the 49ers, with whom he helped draft Frank Gore, Vernon Davis and Patrick Willis, McCloughan was with the Seahawks, helping craft a roster that went to the Super Bowl following the 2005 season. He also worked in Green Bay's scouting department in the mid-90s. The bonus? He is a Raiders legacy, of sorts, as his father Kent not only played defensive back for the Raiders from 1965-70, but was also a scout for the team for more than 30 years.
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Ron WolfI joke. Kinda. But the 73-year-old Wolf has already been acting in an advisory role, so why not pull a Dick CheneyRollie Massimino and say, Hey, I can't find anyone better than myself, why not hire me? Nah, probably not, but still. Many Raiders loyalists see Wolf as the true architect behind each of the Raiders' three Super Bowl championship teams. Lightning in a bottle, anyone?Hue JacksonI joke again. Kinda. But the moves and words coming from Jackson in his first year as a head coach at any level have been more of the G.M. variety than an X's and O's kinda guy. It wouldn't be hard to imagine Jackson promoting himself for the role to Mark Davis, considering how he said he wants to be a bigger part of the organization and knows what needs to be done to fix the roster. Sounds like a player personnel guy, right? This way, Jackson would have absolutely no one to answer to in a football operations situation. HueJack City to the extreme.

Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch suspended one game


Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch suspended one game

Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch watched most of Thursday night’s game versus Kansas City from the stands after getting ejected for making contact with an official.

He’ll also be a spectator next week.

The NFL suspended him one game for unsportsmanlike conduct stemming from an incident where left the sidelines to join an on-field scuffle and ended up pushing an official.

The league announced the suspension Friday afternoon. Lynch has already appealed the suspension, per multiple reports.

He was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct and automatically ejected by rule.

Punishment after the fact has gotten expensive.

By rule, Lynch will be fined $30,387 for making contact with an official. He could get hit with other penalties, including entering a fight unnecessarily.

Lynch is also suspended without pay, meaning he’ll forfeit a $79,411 game check and a $31,250 per-game roster bonus.

The Cal alum won’t play a Week 8 contest in Buffalo, against a Bills team that drafted him No. 12 overall in 2007.

Lynch was on the sidelines during a third down draw play where quarterback Derek Carr incurred what officials called a late hit from Kansas City cornerback Marcus Peters.

The Raiders offensive line took offense, and came after Peters in a scrum. Lynch and Peters, both Oakland natives, are extremely close. Lynch ran on the field to get between his teammates and his friend, but ended up inadvertently pushing an official. The league has zero tolerance for that, and sent him off the field.

Lynch watched a dramatic 31-30 victory over Kansas City from the stands and screens near the field, and congratulated his teammates after a big win.

Lynch did not explain why he entered the fray, though he seemed to be trying to get Peters out of harm’s way.

“They can say what they want but one thing’s for certain: Family do come first,” Peters told Bay Area News Group’s Logan Murdock.

His Raiders teammates and coaches must carry on without the 31-year old power back. They’ll roll with Jalen Richard, DeAndre Washington and fullback Jamize Olawale against the Bills, as they did against the Chiefs.

Lynch had two carries for nine yards before getting tossed. He has just 266 yards and two touchdowns on 72 carries through seven games.

If the suspension is upheld, Lynch will be eligible to return in Week 9 against Miami.

Snap count: Bowman worked overtime to be 'hunting dog' in Raiders' defense


Snap count: Bowman worked overtime to be 'hunting dog' in Raiders' defense

OAKLAND – NaVorro Bowman would’ve been forgiven for skipping Thursday’s game. The veteran inside linebacker signed with the Raiders, and had one practice and a pair of walk-throughs before facing Kansas City.

That isn’t much time to absorb a new scheme. No matter. As he said Monday, Bowman wanted to show you something.

The former 49er certainly did, even more than Bowman expected. He played 60 of 62 defensive snaps in a crucial 31-30 victory over the Chiefs.

He didn’t just play. He performed. Bowman led the Raiders with 11 tackles, including one for a loss and a crucial hit on Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith on a crucial third-down stop in the fourth quarter.

He wore the green dot – play calls were relayed to his helmet speaker -- and helped get the defense lined up.

“I just absolutely love the football player in him. He’s a hunting dog,” head coach Jack Del Rio said. “He loves to play. He brought experience during the week. He was a settling influence, kind of a determined influence on the sideline. I thought he did a remarkable job.”

That’s the result. The process of getting there was remarkable. He put in 40 hours of work in three days, memorizing terminology and defensive concepts specific to the game plan. He bunkered down and ignored the world during his acclimation process, and came out a functional member of the Raiders defense.

“Everyone knows I’ve only been here for three days and must be wondering how I did it,” Bowman said. “It was my commitment to the game, and my family understanding how much I love the work and giving me that peace and quiet time in hours away from them to really get everything down. This is why you want to come out so well and execute. So many people are sacrificing so you can play the game.”

Bowman helped keep the Raiders close down the stretch, and had key stops in a pair of defensive stops that allowed quarterback Derek Carr to orchestrate a successful two-minute drill.

"I was on the sidelines with my back turned, saying ‘I can’t watch, I can’t watch,’” Bowman said. “They all looked at me funny like, ‘This is what we do.’ They went out and won, and acted all normal. I guess that’s how we roll. It was a great game, and I enjoyed it.”

That was clear after the game. There was a good reason for it. Bowman hadn’t won a game since September 2016. Bowman lost most of last season recovering from an Achilles’ tendon injury, meaning he last tasted victory in Week 2 last season.

“I’ve worked my way back from the Achilles injury, and to have a shot to better and get better and possibly win a division is huge,” Bowman said. “We just beat a really good team. I think this will propel us and get us going.”

Quarterback –
Derek Carr 82
Running back – Jalen Richard 26, DeAndre Washington 25, Jamize Olawale 11, Marshawn Lynch 10
Wide receiver – Amari Cooper 78, Seth Roberts 72, Michael Crabtree 72, Cordarelle Patterson 18, Johnny Holton 6
Tight end – Jared Cook 67, Lee Smith 17, Clive Walford 8
Offensive line – Kelechi Osemele 82, Rodney Hudson 82, Donald Penn 82, Vadal Alexander 82, Gabe Jackson 82

Defensive line –
Khalil Mack 62, Denico Autry 46, Justin Ellis 44, Treyvon Hester 32, Mario Edwards 28, Eddie Vanderdoes 19, James Cowser 3
Linebacker – NaVorro Bowman 60, Bruce Irvin 59, Nicholas Morrow 38,
Cornerback – TJ Carrie 62, Dexter McDonald 50, David Amerson 28, Sean Smith 19
Safety – Reggie Nelson 62, Karl Joseph 62, Keith McGill 7, Shalom Luani 1

Keith McGill 25, James Cowser 25, Shalom Luani 21, Xavier Woodson-Luster 19, Erik Harris 19, Jamize Olawale 19, Shlique Calhoun 16, Jon Feliciano 14, Lee Smith 14, Giorgio Tavecchio 12, Johnny Holton 12, Marquette King 11, Jon Condo 11, Cordarrelle Patterson 11, Jalen Richard 10, Nicholas Morrow 10, Darius McCray 8, Kelechi Osemele 7, Gabe Jackson 7, Vadal Alexander 7, Clive Walford 7, Justin Ellis 7, David Sharpe 7, Khalil Mack 6, TJ Carrie 6, Denico Autry 6, Treyvon Hester 6, Eddie Vanderdoes 6, Mario Edwards Jr. 5, Karl Joseph 5, DeAndre Washington 4,

QB EJ Manuel

CB Gareon Conley, QB Connor Cook, OT Jylan Ware, LB Marquel Lee, LB Cory James, DL Jihad Ward, RT Marshall Newhouse