Oakland Raiders: How Short Should the Leash on Dennis Allen Be?

Travis Wakeman@@traviswakeman10Featured Columnist IVNovember 27, 2012

OAKLAND, CA - NOVEMBER 18: Head Coach Dennis Allen throws his red flag challenging a call during the first quarter of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints at O.co Coliseum on November 18, 2012 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

When the Oakland Raiders brought in Reggie McKenzie as their new general manager, one of his first orders of business was to fire head coach Hue Jackson following a disappointing 8-8 season.

It may have been a bit of surprising move, but his next decision, to appoint Jackson's successor, was even more surprising. Despite being the Denver Broncos' defensive coordinator for just one season, Dennis Allen was given the position as the 18th head coach in franchise history.

In his lone season in Denver, Allen had the Broncos ranked 20th in team defense. Before that, he served as defensive backs coach for the New Orleans Saints.

Allen is off to a 3-8 start in his first season in Oakland, and with the way they're playing, they don't figure to win many more. However, do the failures of this season all fall on Allen?

He has dealt with young, underperforming players as well as injuries at many of the key offensive positions. Star running back Darren McFadden has missed the past three games and most of a fourth and has run for just 455 yards on the season. As a result, the Raiders are currently ranked 29th in the league in rushing offense.

McKenzie brought in a defensive-minded coach to instill a new character in the organization, but to this point, it hasn't worked out.

The Raiders' problems run much deeper than the head coach. Greg Knapp is as much to blame as anyone for the ineptitude on offense, as the Raiders just don't have the talent or the right scheme to win games in the NFL.

The Raiders will have a high first-round draft pick and some tough choices to make in free agency with players like Shane Lechler, Joselio Hanson and Brandon Myers, among others.

It will certainly be an interesting offseason in Oakland, and fans will likely be calling for Allen's head after just one season, but he deserves the chance to have at least one more.

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