Gruden, GM Share Raiders Roster Control

Earlier this month, Raiders GM Reggie McKenzie turned down an opportunity to interview for the Packers’ GM vacancy. That was our first indication that McKenzie would maintain at least some control over Oakland’s 53-man roster, despite the arrival of Jon Gruden as head coach. Reggie McKenzie (vertical)

At Tuesday’s introductory press conference for the new (/old) head coach, Gruden confirmed that the two will “work together” to make roster decisions. McKenzie, meanwhile, was upbeat about the new arrangement.

Since taking over as Raiders GM in 2012, the team has gone a combined 36-60, including three seasons with four victories or less. But, in 2016, the team turned a corner and made the playoffs with a 12-4 record. The Raiders fell short this year, but they still wanted to keep the 2016 NFL Executive of the Year in the fold.

McKenzie and Gruden both say they’re excited to collaborate on building the team, but it will be interesting to see how well the two men will handle roster disagreements. McKenzie has been at the helm for five years, but one has to wonder if the $100MM man will have the upper hand on most matters.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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2 comments on “Gruden, GM Share Raiders Roster Control

  1. card collector18

    Am I the only thinking this guys getting way too much power way too fast

    • JT19

      Gruden? Not really. Its not like he’s a first time head coach, he’s been around/in the league for a while so he knows what he wants and knows football. He also left a pretty comfy position at ESPN so a team offering him a head coaching spot (college or NFL) would have to give him some more power than a normal HC should. Plus, I’ve always been of the mindset that the HC should have a good amount of control over the roster. At the end of the day, the HC is responsible for results and making sure players fit in with the system/locker room/culture. The HC is often the first one to be fired if the team plays bad, so why shouldn’t they have some control over their roster. GMs often get a second chance if the team plays bad so there’s less urgency and less caution when it comes to roster decisions.

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