With the main rumblings with regard to the Raiders coaching staff being whether Ken Norton Jr will be retained as Defensive Coordinator out there, Ian Rapoport chimed in. first saying “sounds like Ken is returning” and later giving a rather definitive “Ken Norton is staying”
As you might imagine, this gained traction pretty quickly, making its way to Raiders defenders who play under Norton. The first to respond was, not unexpectedly, Bruce Irvin, who said it’s simply a matter of the players buying into Norton’s system.
Ken Norton jr. ✊— Bruce Irvin (@BIrvin_WVU11) January 10, 2017
The system has been proven the shit works! I know that first hand everyone must buy in!— Bruce Irvin (@BIrvin_WVU11) January 10, 2017
Irvin is probably Norton’s biggest fan as a player. He played under him in Seattle, and was recruited to come to Oakland last offseason, a move that was easy for him because it meant following the man he said saved his career.
Irvin finished with 7.0 sacks last season; most since his rookie season. He also had 57 combined tackles (47 solo) which was a career high.
Norton is well liked by his players. He has another year left on his contract, so if he indeed is returning, he will have another shot to coach the Raiders defense out of the bottom of the league where the were last season despite the addition of Irvin and several others last offseason.