To be honest I believe Reggie has done all that he possibly could with what he has had at his disposal. It is his first year and he will make mistakes. However, the good far outweighs the bad.
Originally Posted by The Blackness
Breaking down some of the moves made:
Firing Hue Jackson
What choice did he have. Firstly, Hue thought he was a GM. Secondly, the team went 1-4 down the stretch and Hue totally lost the lockerroom. Reggie had to make his imprint immediately getting a HC he thought that would work. Bold and risky, yes. But a move that needed to be made, nonetheless.
Hiring Dennis Allen
Dennis Allen is well respected around the NFL, in spite of what the naysayers on here would like the rest of us to believe. He is a rookie HC, but that fits with Reggie's idea. Build the team through the draft and UDFA's. Reggie hired a HC that will grow with him and into the job. Being a rookie HC brings its problems. But this is a long-term fix not a 1 year turn around. One important thing is that DA has changed the culture of the lockerrom. The cancers have gone or are on the way out. In doing so, DA did not lose the support of the lockerrom.
Hiring Greg Knapp
This move obviously did not pan out well. The problems Knapp had the first go-round with the Raiders resurfaced in 2012. At least Reggie and DA admitted the error and have made the change.
Hiring Jason Tarver
I like the signing at the time and still do now. That Tarver had the defense with a lot of injuries playing hard down the stretch after a poor November was encouraging. In fact the defense in December was as good as I have seen from the Raiders for a number of years.
No cap space what do you do. Reggie and DA had no choice to take some chances on cheaper players or players coming off injury. It worked in some instances - Phillip Wheeler and getting Goodson. It did not work in other instances - Ron Bartell and Shawntae Spencer. Signing Mike Brisiel was neither good nor bad. He did not improve the o-line nor did he weaken. That he played all season with an ankle injury is telling. What the Raiders do with him this off-season will be interesting.
Now for the players the Raiders let go. Kam Wimbley? A reasonable season and 6 sacks ould lead this team. However, his contract has not maintainable and is he really worth it? Stan Routt? Released by the Chiefs (the team with the worst record in the NFL). Not picked up by another team. Even Ron Bartell was picked up by the Lions after the Raiders cut him. Michael Bush, Jason Campbell? Did nothing to suggest they would have been better than Goodson or Palmer. Samson Satele did well for the Colts. But the plan for the Raiders was always to have Stefen Wisniewski starting at Centre. DVD was let go because he refused to be coached.
Not much Reggie could do given the picks. Miles Burris, Jon Criner, and Christo Bilukidi played roles. Crawford is raw and willl come on. Bergstrom's progress was not helped by being moved around, in part due to injury. Given what he had, Reggie did prety well.
The obvious plus was the UDFA signing of Streater. Another UDFA signing that may work out is Lucas Nix. Also the Raiders have Punter Marquette King for 2013.
To me, I do not see what Reggie could do different taking hindisght out of it. Hindsight would suggest you do not sign Bartell and Spencer, not give Brisiel the deal he got. But hindsight is 20/20 and you have to view the moves in respect to when they were made and the situation.
What some will come up with are bringing people like Gruden and Cowher. These are pipe-dreams that could not, would not, and will not ever happen. It is easy to say bring these guys in but, realistically, they will never come to the Raiders no matter what you throw at them.
THE Raiders 2014 Draft Class:
Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo
Derek Carr, QB, Fresno State
Gabe Jackson, G, Mississippi State
Justin Ellis, NT, Louisiana Tech
Keith McGill, DB, Utah
Travis Carrie, CB, Ohio
Shelby Harris, DE, Illinois State
Jonathon Dowling, FS, Western Kentucky
QANTAS - even when an engine explodes the catering/service is STILL the biggest disaster on a Qantas flight!!!