After many years of only seeing Al Davis on TV once a year, if that, to address the state of the Oakland Raiders, it has felt abnormal to see a Raiders press conference twice over the past three weeks with those conferences to introduce a new general manager in Reggie McKenzie and a new head coach in Dennis Allen.
Normally when a team is undergoing as much change in the offseason as the Raiders are this year, it is to follow up a bad season with a house-cleaning that sees most of the previous coaches and front office members fired.
Just like the entrance video says, when the Raiders take the field at home games, "There are 31 teams in the NFL...then there are the Oakland Raiders."
What that means is that the Raiders are different from the rest of the league, in case you didn't know. And that saying applies here because the Raiders are not cleaning house because of a bad season, they are cleaning house because their iconic owner passed away on October 8, 2011.
That leads me to Reggie McKenzie and Dennis Allen. Do they understand that their jobs are not to rebuild this team? The Raiders spent much of the last decade rebuilding, and they're now in a position to make a playoff push.
I am nervous about the direction of this team under the new leadership. McKenzie worries me because he fired Hue Jackson to bring on the third coach in three years for this team. Also, Jackson isn't to blame for the defensive meltdowns that cost this team the 2011 AFC West championship.
I am also worried about the rumors of trading Darren McFadden and starting Michael Bush, who didn't carry for more than 76 yards down the homestretch of the season after exploding on San Diego on NFL Network.
And to top it all off, at his conference today Coach Allen seemed to be ready to fire offensive coordinator Al Saunders, who is leftover from Hue Jackson's staff. As I said earlier, the Raiders offense was the team's strength.
I also said rebuilding wasn't necessary, but it looks like there will be yet another offense being installed in Oakland during the 2012 OTA's and training camp.
McKenzie and Allen are in uncharted waters, and they are poking holes in their own ship.
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