It was just over a month ago when Yahoo's Mike Silver wrote an article depicting Raiders owner Mark Davis as the incompetent "Tommy Boy" of his father's long standing business—a reference to the 1995 Chris Farley movie, Tommy Boy.
Silver referenced a story he was told by a former team employee that illustrated the way the elder Davis notoriously belittling his son. Here is a transcript of that conversation:
Back in the spring of 2008, when he was very much in charge of the Oakland Raiders’ singularly peculiar organization, Al Davis presided over a pre-draft meeting at the team’s Alameda, Calif., training facility. As coaches and personnel officials discussed what to do with the fourth overall pick, which the team would ultimately use to select Arkansas halfback Darren McFadden, the Hall of Fame owner’s son, Mark, casually drifted into the room.
“Mark,” Davis said, stopping the meeting and sounding genuinely interested. “What do you think we should do?”
Caught off guard, the younger Davis mumbled something about needing a wide receiver.
“A [expletive] receiver?” Al Davis snapped, his voice rising. “Get the [expletive] out of here.” And with that, the heir to one of the NFL’s most storied franchises slinked out of the room and continued with the rest of his day.
Do you approve of way Mark Davis has cleaned house?
In the article, Silver predicted that Mark Davis would make a move to eliminate anyone who was aware of just how incompetent his father apparently felt he was.
Silver is a known supporter of Hue Jackson, and it wasn't coincidence that his article was published the day after Jackson was fired. It seemed like an obvious effort to paint Mark Davis as a dubious owner that wasn't qualified to own a football team. At the very least it was an attempt to defend Hue Jackson as a competent head coach caught in the crosshairs of an organizational power struggle.
To Silver's credit, the "firing" of John Herrera, which turned out to a substantial demotion, seems to support his theory. Hue Jackson told reporters after he was fired that GM Reggie McKenzie was "going to gut this place," and it looks like he was right.
But the real question is why would Davis want anyone around from his father's regime? They didn't have a winning season in over a decade.
There are plenty of owners around the league who don't know football. They are the ones who think they do tend to have the most trouble. Mark Davis has made it clear that he plans to stay away from football operations. That's why McKenzie was hired.
Mark didn't take the chance that he would be privately undermined by his father's puppets. Who wouldn't have done that?
For all the criticism that Al Davis and the Raider organization endured from media members like Mike Silver, it hardly makes sense for those same writers to take shots at the person who seems set on changing the culture in Oakland. Even if that person happens to be the son of Al Davis.