Originally published on SBReport.net on Feb. 26, 2013
Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie appears to be reaching out to his former colleagues once again as reports surfaced that the team was in discussions with former Packers head coach Mike Holmgren to fill their open position for a team president.
The Raiders have appeared to be looking for a team president and Holmgren is just the latest name to pop up, according the ESPN.
Holmgren served as the Packers head coach from 1992-1998 while McKenzie was working in the front office. Holmgren most recently served as the Cleveland Browns team president from 2010-2012 until he was ousted when new team owner Jimmy Haslam bought the team.
Holmgren also served as the vice president and general manager while also being the head coach of the Seattle Seahawks for ten seasons, helping lead the team to a Super Bowl appearance.
The Raiders formerly interviewed Ray Anderson for the job, who is currently acting as the NFL's senior vice president of football operations. Holmgren is just the most recent ex-Packer that McKenzie has reached out to, after having brought in many former Packer players. It is also another step along McKenzie's team to restructure the organization after the passing of iconic owner Al Davis in 2011.
Originally published on SBReport.net on Feb. 24, 2013
ProFootballTalk.com has issued a report that Raiders defensive tackle Desmond Bryant was arrested Sunday morning on charges of "criminal mischief".
While details have not been released on the defensive tackle's arrest, it is poor timing on Bryant's to be arrested. Bryant is set to be a free agent when the new league year begins in March.
Bryant represents part of the Raiders defensive line that may be leaving in free agency. The Raiders have multiple players on defense that are available via free agency and need to find a way to keep Bryant as he is a strong building block on the defensive trench.
Bryant, who signed with the Raiders out of Harvard as an unsigned free agent in 2009, has been a solid piece to the Raiders defensive line having racked up 93 tackles and 10.5 sacks in 63 games played for the Raiders.
Bryant was an important piece for the Raiders while veteran Richard Seymour was out with a nagging hamstring injury for much of the 2012 season. With the Raiders voiding Seymour's contract, it could be important for the to find a way to sign their young Ivy League defensive tackle instead of letting him sign with another team.
With Seymour likely gone, and Tommy Kelly having a large salary cap hit, the Raiders need to find a way to keep Bryant even if it means breaking the bank. The potential he has shown over the past could of years has proved to the Raiders that they need to find a way to keep him.
Originally published on SBReport.net on Feb. 7, 2013
As it became apparent to many Raider fans on Wednesday, the Raiders have announced their plans of "eliminating" roughly 11,000 seats at O.Co Coliseum for the upcoming 2013 NFL season.
Raiders Chief Executive Amy Trask met with local media on Wednesday afternoon to help brief the media on the new plan.
"For the 2013 season, what are we doing," Trask started. "We are eliminating the third deck eastside: sections 335 to 355. 300 to 303, those 3 and a half sections, and 331 to 334, those three and a half sections."
The elimination and relocation of these sections are bringing down the capacity from roughly 64,200 to 53,200.
In addition to relocating many season ticket holders, the Raiders are also lowering prices of tickets.
"We are doing a concomitant pricing and the reason for so doing is really two-fold," Trask explained. "We are relocating, or have relocated all of the 2012 season ticket holders who were in the seats that are being eliminated to this side of the stadium and it did not seem to us to be appropriate to unilaterally relocate people into higher priced seats."
With this, people being relocated will in theory obtain better season ticket seats at a better price. Trask explained that Raiders ticket personnel are working with customers to relocate them to a seat that best matches their previous sight line.
Trask and the Raiders front office believe that the move will also help create more of a family atmosphere at games since families will have more money to buy more tickets to bring the whole family.
"It's an ongoing commitment on our part to create a vibrant, vibrant gameday environment with a community of season ticket holders," Trask said. "We'd like to sellout our entire stadium on a season ticket basis and continue our efforts to create a family-friendly environment. Of course, another reason is we want to continue to provide the entire region on television live locally, it's not a revenue-based decision."
With the new capacity of approximately 53,200 seats, after considering all of the premium seats in club seats and suites, the Raiders will now only need to sell roughly 42,300 tickets to have the game shown on live television locally. With the adopted 85-percent rule last year, the Raiders needed to sell roughly 56,200 tickets and were able to sellout all but one regular game and one preseason game.
Trask explained that every NFL team must deliver a "manifest" to the league that gets "locked in" which the Raiders included their plan to eliminate the aforementioned seats. This means that this seat "elimination" will remain in place for the entire season. This means that the Raiders will not be able to fill the extra seats even if their is a demand for them.
"That's a league rule. If you eliminate seats, elimination means elimination," Trask said. "My understanding is that the rule pertains to the playoffs as well."
Though the prices of tickets are dropping, it does not appear that the pricing of parking will drop.
"That's a city/county decision and that will be up to the city and county," Trask said of the parking fee.
Besides discussing the new seating situation, Trask also touched on the Raiders future stadium situation as their current lease at the O.Co Coliseum ends at the end of the 2013 season.
Trask reiterated that the Raiders efforts remain focused on keeping the team on their current soil next to Interstate 880. Trask said that it is "their hope, their desire to get a new stadium on that site" but also acknowledged the need for a new building.
Trask also acknowledged that the team did have talks with the San Francisco 49er's about sharing their new Santa Clara stadium, but mentioned that they haven't had any talks recently. She also reiterated again that their efforts are completely focused on staying in Oakland when a question about Los Angeles came up.
While Trask didn't think it would be appropriate to mention what was being discussed while in talks with the City of Oakland and Alameda County, she did describe the conversations as "serious, everybody working together, collaboratively and cooperatively to see if we can find the solution that we're all looking for."
Originally published on SBReport.net on Feb. 2, 2013
Former Raiders defensive lineman Warren Sapp was selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame as part of the 2013 Class.
Sapp joins six others in the 2013 class: Larry Allen, Cris Carter, Curley Culp, Jonathan Ogden, Bill Parcells and Dave Robinson.
Sapp played four seasons while donning the Silver & Black (2004-2007), recording 19.5 sacks in 58 starts. Sapp was more dominant during his nine-year tenure for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers where he recorded 77 sacks in his nine seasons.
The defensive tackle earned seven Pro Bowl selections, named All-Pro four times and was named a part of the 1990 and 2000 NFL All-Decade Teams.
On another note, former Raiders wide receiver Tim Brown will have to wait another year in hopes of making it next year after missing out the past two years due to Cris Carter being selected this year.