The Reggie McKenzie era in Oakland got off to a worse start than even the most realistic Raiders fan could have imagined, as this team has been embarrassed on a weekly basis. For the season, the Raiders are minus-114 in points differential—the third-worst mark in the NFL behind the Jacksonville Jaguars and Kansas City Chiefs.
Of the three games the team has managed to win, only one was against an opponent worth getting excited about—the Week 3 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
This ungodly display of incompetence is unacceptable, and the two primary causes—Palmer and Allen—must pay for their sins.
So, what are their sins, exactly?
Palmer can't help himself from throwing interceptions.
It's always been his weak spot, as he's averaged over 14 interceptions a season throughout his career, including the 2008 and 2011 seasons, when he only played in four and 10 games, respectively.
This season, Palmer has thrown 11 interceptions. The only players who have been more careless with the football are Philip Rivers, Tony Romo, Matt Cassel, Matt Ryan, Andrew Luck and Ryan Tannehill. Of those six, two are rookies, and three need to be replaced by their teams.
Palmer is capable of putting up big numbers, but he requires many attempts to put up those numbers. Efficiency is not his strong suit, and he's clearly not the future of the Raiders franchise.
Does Palmer need to go?
At this point in the season, with a 3-7 record, the Raiders would be smart to let Terrelle Pryor give it a go and see what the kid's got.
Palmer's upside is a known quantity, and he's not doing enough to win games.
It's time for him to take a seat on the bench—this time for good.
Mark Davis isn't pleased with the way the Raiders have played this season and recently said, "I'm embarrassed. Pissed. Disappointed. And I take full responsibility for it. I'm patient, but I want to see progress. Not regression," according to Paul Gutierrez of CSNBayArea.com.
Forget about regression—Allen got this team off on the wrong foot from Day 1, when he hired Gregg Knapp to come in and coordinate his offense.
Talk about trying to fit a square peg into a round hole.
Knapp's zone-blocking scheme has been the bane of Darren McFadden's existence this season (when he's been healthy, that is).
Furthermore, his play-calling has been abhorrent. For the season, the Raiders have run 417 passing plays and just 224 running plays—as unbalanced an offense as you're going to see in the NFL.
Does Dennis Allen deserve another season, or is he already done?
That's unacceptable for a team whose head coach is a former defensive coordinator.
On top of all of this, the way Allen has failed to prepare his team mentally for games of late is unconscionable.
Simply put, Allen's leadership has proven to be insufficient, and the best thing McKenzie can do is rip off the Band-Aid, fire Allen and start over from scratch next season.