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Silver Mining 12/11: Reggie McKenzie out, search for new Raiders GM begins

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NFL: Oakland Raiders at Miami Dolphins Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Raiders news

Reggie McKenzie out as Raiders General Manager | Silver and Black Pride

A day after reports said Reggie McKenzie would be out after the season as Raiders GM as part of a front office overhaul, McKenzie decided not to wait and just to end it now.

Jon Gruden wishes Reggie McKenzie well, Mark Davis strangely silent as Raiders officially announce GM’s firing | Silver and Black Pride

We may hear from Davis in the near future, but the silence from him in the press release is deafening. There’s no excuse aside from some potential bad blood that would explain the lack of a few kind words for the man who steered the Raiders ship for the past seven years.

Bruce Allen to the Raiders? Don’t get your hopes up, Redskins fans. | Washington Post

Given that Allen and Gruden worked together at two NFL stops in the past, including a previous stint in Oakland, the McKenzie news prompted all sorts of speculation that the Raiders’ $100 million head coach might be interested in a reunion. That very possibility was raised Monday by none other than NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, who mentioned Allen’s name first while rattling off some league figures with connections to Gruden who might wind up joining him on the Raiders.

Mark Davis and Jon Gruden to ‘discuss’ search for Raiders ‘new front office executive’ in wake of Reggie McKenzie firing | Silver and Black Pride

Two in-house names that have come up in this process have been Dave Razzano, who was brought on this offseason with the title of Director of Football Research. Reports have suggested he has been Gruden’s ‘righthand man’. The other is Shaun Herock, who Gruden said is essentially the interim personnel man until they can find a permanent

Raiders OL Jon Feliciano likely out for season | Silver and Black Pride

Feliciano, who is the only Raider draft pick from 2015 still with the team, is a primary backup at both center and guard and his versatility has made him extremely valuable this year with all the injuries to the Raiders’ starting linemen. But the calf injury he suffered at the very end of the Steelers game on Sunday was severe enough that quarterback Derek Carr had to help him off the field after the final Raiders drive. Feliciano had toughed it out up to that point.

Jon Gruden feels he ‘inhibited’ Derek Carr, wants him to ‘relax, go play’ | Silver and Black Pride

A big part of the Raiders’ fine play has been the resurgence of quarterback Derek Carr, who seems to have left 2017 behind him and reverted to his excellent form of 2016.

AFC West

Season of inconsistency leaves Broncos needing a playoff miracle |

They are now a 6-7 team trailing four 7-6 teams already fighting for the sixth, and final, playoff spot. That puts them on the list for a Christmas miracle with the amount of help they would need to earn a January game, but it also clarifies their part for the regular season’s final three weeks.

Bradley Chubb tops Miller’s Broncos rookie sack mark |

Rookie pass rusher Bradley Chubb lived up to the pre-draft hype, generating two more sacks versus the 49ers to set a new team rookie record with 12 QB takedowns.

These two incredible plays by Patrick Mahomes propelled the Chiefs past the Ravens | CBS Sports

Facing 4th-and-9 from the Chiefs’ 40, Mahomes did what we’ve seen him do countless times through the first 13 weeks. He bought time with his feet, then relied on his right arm to find Tyreek Hill downfield.

Seahawks-Chiefs stays on primetime despite potential lack of stakes | Fieldgulls

I want to see the Seattle Seahawks and Kansas City Chiefs on primetime in Week 16, as they’ve been scheduled to play, so please at least temporarily park your pitchfork as I say the following statement: the NFL opted not to flex the game out of Sunday Night Football in two weeks but factually speaking, the game might not have any stakes when it comes to the 2018 postseason.

Chargers quickly shift focus to Thursday showdown vs. Chiefs | Yahoo Sports

While most teams get 24 hours to savor a victory, the Chargers spent about 24 minutes to revel in their 26-21 win over the Cincinnati Bengals before preparations began for Thursday’s pivotal AFC West matchup at Kansas City.

Melvin Gordon, Austin Ekeler injuries will test Chargers run game vs. Chiefs | Fansided

On Thursday Night Football, the Chargers will be visiting the Chiefs to begin Week 15 of the regular season, and that means injured players are going to have limited time to heal from the previous week. For the Chargers, it means that their rushing attack is going to be serious limited and tested with word that running back Austin Ekeler is hurting alongside Melvin Gordon, who has sat out the last two games with an MCL sprain.

NFL news

A Weird NFL Weekend Leaves Us Even More Confused | FiveThirtyEight

It was definitely startling to see the Rams’ offense be held in check so thoroughly. Jared Goff was terrible. Todd Gurley did next to nothing. The Rams’ offensive expected points added in the game was -23.5. That was 29.6 points worse than their second-worst offensive game of the season … which was Week 13 vs. Detroit. And it was 33.8 points of EPA worse than their low before the Detroit game.

Belichick takes blame for last play: ‘It starts with me’ |

Patriots coach Bill Belichick took another stab at attempting to explain his decision to put Gronkowski in place of safety Devin McCourty in the defensive Hail Mary package during a Monday teleconference with reporters.

Seahawks stuff Vikings, keep distance in playoff hunt |

The Seahawks defense followed in the footsteps of the Ravens’ and Bears’ this week, frustrating the opposing big-time quarterback across the line of scrimmage, forcing stops with crushing pressure and proving that, in today’s NFL, defense can still be king. Led by Bobby Wagner, Frank Clark and a transcendent Shaquill Griffin, Seattle nearly shut out Kirk Cousins and an overwhelmed Vikings offense and held Minnesota to just 276 total yards.

NFL contender kryptonite: Biggest weakness for each playoff team |

I’ve gone through and found a would-be spoiler for each of the 12 teams that currently hold playoff spots. I’ll start in the AFC, where the Chiefs might have already come face to face with their worst nightmare and narrowly lived to tell the tale.