My head is still spinning from all the changes that have begun with our Raiders. There has been a lot of differences of opinions amongst us on the firing of Hue Jackson and where it leaves our team. I have been one of the stronger supporters of Hue and I do not like that he was fired, however I do understand where the firing came from. It was not because he was "Terrible" like many say, and I am not going to bother arguing against that opinion anyway since it is irrelevant.
Whether you believe Hue was terrible or not for this past season has no barring on his firing. It simply came down to Reggie Mckenzie not wanting to have a power struggle with his head coach. He wants to bring in his own guy, and I am willing to wait and see who that person will be before I decide how I truly feel about Jackson's firing. I hate changing coaches every year, but I hate having a lame duck coach who is just going to be fired after the next season stay on board even more.
Nothing gets accomplished when the coach knows the GM is going to fire him after the next season, an example being Eric Mangini and the Cleveland Browns. If Reggie knew he did not want to work with Hue then Jackson had to go, he was no longer the head dog and was not going to stop acting like he was. I do not believe Jackson's performance made him deserve to be fired, but I do believe the hiring of a new GM who has full control made it likely to happen anyway.
I really hope that we are not going to hire another coach without any Head Coaching experience, no matter how much I respect and believe in Winston Moss. If he gets hired I will get on board with it, but it is too painful to watch the same rookie mistakes be made season after season. I want an experienced coach, and if at all possible one with a ring or two. I would be more than happy to see Moss come in as our defensive coordinator but its hard to see that happening with him being a leading candidate for the head coach job.
Reggie Mckenzie knows this league in and out. He has connections everywhere and has the intelligence to use them. As we already have seen he is not a very well polished public speaker, but try not to let that fog your opinion of his football mind. We did not hire him to talk, we hired him to act. We saw what too much talking gets you anyway, a one way ticket out of town. The fact that he came in and was willing to put his butt in the line of fire immediately with the firing of Hue Jackson says a lot about him to me. He is ready to do what needs to be done, be damned with the consequences and public opinion. Sounds like a Raider to me!
Now Reggie has the opportunity to put everybody he believes in into place. He has made this major move now to be able to hire the person that he will believe in for years to come. That stat of not having a coach last for 3 years that ESPN happily throws around will be coming to an end. He is not going to hire somebody just to fire them a year later like we have grown far too used to. Whoever he decides is his guy is going to be here for a number of years. That I am certain of. He comes from working under people that believe in patience and continuity and those are things that we do not even know exist anymore in Oakland.
Despite starting off his GM career with what appears to be a mass exodus of the current staff and probably many players, I do not believe that is what we will remember his tenure for. He was brought in to change things, and that is exactly what he is doing. When the smoke clears and the remaining bodies can look around and account for all their fingers and toes I believe they will be standing on a mountain of stability. Mr. Mckenzie is doing what he needs to now to be able to have that stability we have been missing for the past decade. We will see if he does it properly, if not we will be without light for a number of years longer.