There is no question that the most hyped coaching hire of the NFL cycle this past season was Jon Gruden leaving the ESPN broadcast booth to return to the Oakland (soon to be Las Vegas) Raiders sideline in 2018.
And, just he did in Tampa Bay in 2003, it appears 15 years later, Gruden may bring current Redskins executive Bruce Allen with him oversee the Raiders football organization.
The story originated Monday morning from Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio:
If changes are coming to Raiders front office, they haven't happened yet (but some think Bruce Allen is looming) https://t.co/kosBa6LfSQ
— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) April 30, 2018
“The report that Raiders coach Jon Gruden is making changes to the team’s front office came as news to the team’s front office.
Per a source with knowledge of the situation, no changes have happened in Oakland. This doesn’t mean that changes won’t be coming. They just haven’t occurred yet.
That said, changes are expected, sooner or later. There’s a belief in league circles that Washington president Bruce Allen hopes to eventually return to the Raiders, …”
The move makes sense from a continuity/comfort standpoint for Gruden, as Allen was with him as the team’s Vice President and GM from ’03-08 with the Bucs, before they were both fired. Allen had been brought in after Gruden won a power struggle with GM Rich Mckay after they had clashed over free agent signings or lack thereof. Allen’s expertise was contract negotiation and Gruden essentially became in charge of picking the roster.
They were previously both together in Oakland from Gruden’s four seasons there (1998-2001) working under Al Davis. It was Gruden’s first head coaching job and Allen was Davis’ contract negotiator then, as well.
Allen joined the Redskins in December of 2009 originally, as VP/General Manager. His role has evolved over the last few seasons and he became Daniel Snyder’s team President in 2014. The job that he holds, currently.
It’s not clear from Florio’s reporting if current Raiders GM Reggie McKenzie will be kept in this possible re-shuffle. However, the best guess is that, if Allen is being brought back to Oakland, it would be to oversee McKenzie.
McKenzie’s resume includes hiring coach Jack Del Rio, who led them to the playoffs for the first time in 13 years in 2016, and drafting players like Derek Carr and Khalil Mack.
In the end though, owner Mark Davis wanted Gruden, and will likely give him whatever he wants. Stay tuned on if that means Allen comes back to Northern California for a Bucs/Raiders reunion and whether, McKenzie is kept with him.
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