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.
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.
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