017_Raiders16.p1

2016 Oakland Raiders Gameday 7

Gameday MAGAZINE 17 Reggie McKenzie General Manager 30th season in NFL (7 as a player) 9th season with Raiders (4 as a player) Reggie McKenzie, a former draft pick by Raiders Owner Al Davis, enters his 30th season in the National Football League and his fifth as General Manager of the Silver and Black. McKenzie was named to the position by Owner Mark Davis on Jan. 10, 2012, becoming the first General Manager of the franchise since Al Davis was hired as Head Coach and General Manager in 1963. In his first four years as General Manager, McKenzie has overseen significant changes in the organization’s scouting, player personnel and football operations departments, while bringing refined football acumen to the Silver and Black. Adhering to a strategy of building a competitive roster through the draft while making strategic acquisitions via free agency and trades, four of McKenzie’s draft picks earned places in the Pro Bowl following the 2015 season, and five of the team’s recordtying six Pro Bowl selections were drafted or signed during his tenure with the Silver and Black. McKenzie enters his fifth season at the helm having already earned plaudits from some of the most respected voices in football. McKenzie’s proficiency in personnel evaluation is evidenced by the recent influx of productive players to Oakland. During the early freeagency period this past March, the Raiders made a splash by signing guard Kelechi Osemele, linebacker Bruce Irvin, cornerback Sean Smith and safety Reggie Nelson, securing four of the “top 25 available free agents” according to NFL.com. The Raiders also added considerable talent and increased roster depth through the 2016 NFL Draft. The team tabbed exciting safety Karl Joseph out of West Virginia with the 14th overall pick and strengthened the defense with the selections of defensive lineman Jihad Ward and linebacker Shilique Calhoun in the second and third rounds, respectively. McKenzie traded up for the first time as Raiders General Manager in the fourth round, dealing with Cleveland to advance 14 spots to select quarterback Connor Cook out of Michigan State with the 100th overall pick. In 2015, McKenzie addressed key needs in the middle of the defense by adding defensive tackle Dan Williams and safety Nate Allen during the early free-agency period, which immediately strengthened the core of the unit. On offense, McKenzie made key free-agent acquisitions along the offensive line and at several skill positions. Center Rodney Hudson was signed and joined a unit that includes tackles Donald Penn and Austin Howard, both 2014 free agent signings. Wide receiver Michael Crabtree was also added and responded by leading the team in receptions (85) and touchdowns (nine). McKenzie’s scouting department added excellent talent at numerous positions through the 2015 NFL Draft. Wide receiver Amari Cooper,


2016 Oakland Raiders Gameday 7
To see the actual publication please follow the link above