The Oakland Raiders fired first-year coach Hue Jackson on the same day Reggie McKenzie was introduced as the franchise’s general manager.
The Raiders had an 8-8 record under Jackson, losing four of their final five games to miss the National Football League playoffs after a 7-4 start. Oakland hasn’t been to the playoffs since losing the Super Bowl after the 2002 season.
“There was a need for a change at the head coaching position,” McKenzie said today at a news conference. “We’re moving into a new era. I respect coach Jackson, but it’s just something that I want to do, start anew.”
Jackson had handled some of the Raiders’ player personnel decisions since owner Al Davis died in October, including the trade that brought quarterback Carson Palmer to Oakland from Cincinnati for first- and second-round draft picks.
McKenzie, 48, is set to take over those decisions after serving as the Green Bay Packers’ director of football operations since 2008. The Raiders haven’t officially had someone in the general manager role since Bruce Allen left the organization after the 2003 season. Davis and his son, Mark, had largely handled those personnel responsibilities.
“With all things there comes a time when change is necessary,” McKenzie said. “That time is now.”
The Raiders are now looking for their seventh coach since 2002. Since making their last playoff appearance under Bill Callahan, Oakland has gone through Norv Turner, Art Shell, Lane Kiffin, Tom Cable and Jackson.
McKenzie, a former linebacker, was drafted by the Raiders in 1985 and played four of his six NFL seasons with the club. He’d been a member of the Packers’ front office since 1994.
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