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Q&A: Former Packers' exec McKenzie says 'the culture will


Posted: 01/24/2013 2:28 PM

Q&A: Former Packers' exec McKenzie says 'the culture will 

Mobile, Ala. --- For 18 years, Reggie McKenzie had been a mainstay in Green Bay. From 1994 to 2012, McKenzie grew from a scout to director of player personnel to director of football operations. Now, he's finally running the show in Oakland. McKenzie's first year as the Oakland Raiders' general manager was reminiscent of Ted Thompson's first year as G.M. in Green Bay. Both teams went 4-12.

As McKenzie explains, rebuilding the Raiders starts from the inside out. Here's what the Raiders boss had to say about taking over, trying to instill a new culture in Oakland and a potential change at quarterback:

Q: How has it been taking over your own team?

McKenzie: “Coming off the season we had, you’re judged by wins and losses. Coming up with four wins is not good enough. But even going into, I knew what we had to get done. We’re trying to change a lot of things around here, starting with the culture. We have a rookie coach, we have a rookie G.M. We kind of took our bumps here. We’re getting the players we need to get in here, getting the salary cap together. I’ve got almost a full arsenal of draft picks. I’m missing my two and five. Wish I could have those. We’ll find a way to get this thing done.

“Let me tell you something — we’re moving in the right direction. And it’s all about making good decisions. We have a good core of players right now. We’re making sure we get the right fit of 53 players by the end of this whole process so we can start the season ready to roll.”

Q: What did you learn in Green Bay with Ted Thompson?

McKenzie: “It’s all about building your team — build your staff, build your locker room, put the right kind of people in. They want to be Raiders. They want to win. And it’s all about the team. We had that in Green Bay.”

Q: How do you change the culture?

McKenzie: “It takes time. You can change moving parts and all that. But to change the culture, that’s going to take some time. I’m trying to get that back. I’m trying to get the Raider Way back. And we’re going to get it done. But you change it day by day. You can’t just quickly overhaul everything. That’s not going to change anything.”

Q: So it's about the minor changes?

McKenzie: “That helps, that helps. I’m going to continue to do that. We made some changes with the staff, which is the way we need to go. That’s going to help that process. We’re going to get this thing rolling. It’s going to be fine now. The culture will change.”

Q: What's the culture you want?

McKenzie: “When people look at us, they’re going to see professionalism. They’re going to see a winning attitude. They’re going to be a part of a winning atmosphere. They’re going to see our brand of football, which is physical, tough, high-energy play. I want people to be excited to go see a Raider game. So that’s what we’re trying to get to.”

Q: Will Terrelle Pryor have a chance to start this year?

McKenzie: “I want Terrelle to get a shot to show himself at quarterback. I told the whole staff, everybody’s going to compete for their job. So he’s competing for his job. Whether he’s 1, 2 or 3, he’s competing for his job. Starter, that’ll be carried out by coaches at the end of training camp. Show me you’re competitive. You want to get better. We’ll see how it goes.”

In politics, nothing happens by accident. If it happens, you can bet it was planned that way. Franklin D. Roosevelt
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Posted: 01/24/2013 5:11 PM

Re: Q&A: Former Packers' exec McKenzie says 'the culture 

Good read thanks I like what RM has to say with the hire's on the coaching staff things are looking up with a good solid draft and some good free agents we should be a much better team. I still see we will have some hard decisions with the Cap and all this team should be rocking in a couple of years..


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Posted: 01/24/2013 5:59 PM

Re: Q&A: Former Packers' exec McKenzie says 'the culture 

Yeah still a rough off-season this season too on cap cuts and signings . But not as rough as last season was for us should be able to look at maybe a couple of somewhat young but better free agents but what position will they be at for us is the question ?

Does RM look at grabbing a couple of the nice young OL free agents for us ?
Does he look at a couple of the nice young secondary players for us ?
Does he look at the nice couple of DL players there for us ?
Does he look at a young receiver or two ?
Maybe a veteran receiver for us ?
What happens with Myers ,Wheeler , Bryant as F/A ?

Austin Collie-WR
Ramses Barden-WR
Mohamed Massaquoi-WR 

Jabar Gaffney-WR
Devery Henderson-WR
Ruvell Martin-WR

Martellus Bennett-TE
Ben Watson-TE (Veteran)
Dustin Keller-TE

Gosder Cherilus-RT
Phil Loadholt-RT
Ryan Harris-RT
Lance Louis-OG
Louis Vasquez-OG
Deuce Lutui-OG
Chilo Rachal-OG

Osi Umenyiora-DE(Veteran might be pricey for us but could be viewed as a Reggie White signing for RM to help change the Culture here with this type of signing and lockeroom )
Dwight Freeney-DE(See Osi)
Israel Idonije-DE
Ricky Jean-Francois-DT
Sammie Lee Hill-DT
Dwan Edwards-DT
Justin Bannan-DT
Ron Brace-DT

Rush linebackers
Connor Barwin
Paul Kruger
Aaron Maybin

Erin Henderson
Nick Roach
Will Witherspoon
Clint Session

Brian Urlacher
Brad Jones
Jasper Brinkley
Barrett Ruud
Mike Peterson

Sean Smith
Chris Houston
Cary Williams
Mike Jenkins
Leodis McKelvin
Darius Butler
Captain Munnerlyn
In politics, nothing happens by accident. If it happens, you can bet it was planned that way. Franklin D. Roosevelt
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Posted: 01/24/2013 11:26 PM

Re: Q&A: Former Packers' exec McKenzie says 'the culture 

I'd have the agent to Cherlius and Loadholt on the phone ASAP. Barnes is garbage.
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Posted: 01/24/2013 11:30 PM

Re: Q&A: Former Packers' exec McKenzie says 'the culture 

And yeah good read. I'm liking the way RM explains his thinking of the future and the process it'll take to play Raider Football again. On to the draft!
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Posted: 01/25/2013 4:02 PM

Re: Q&A: Former Packers' exec McKenzie says 'the culture 

Yeah I see the big picture that Reggie is looking at that will lead us to a brighter future for us by seeing what the Packers is done using this approach and how it is working in Seattle too .

That rougher here for us as the cap mess with the bloated contracts and the lack of picks really set this team back for Reggie compared to them two teams .
In politics, nothing happens by accident. If it happens, you can bet it was planned that way. Franklin D. Roosevelt
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Posted: 01/25/2013 6:10 PM

RE: Q&A: Former Packers' exec McKenzie says 'the culture 

Year after year, coach after coach, we have been hearing for almost a decade now that every guy is gonna change the culture. I like that Reggie and Allen are getting a legit shot instead of being fired after one year, but forgive me if I'm a little skeptical. The fewer penalties help, the roster cuts help, but that is still just the beginning. There's a long way to go and it's easier said than done.

As far as FA, the name that stands out is Urlacher. In years past, he would be the type of player who everyone says is in decline, but comes to the Raiders for a few more solid years. Who knows if the new front office will take chances on guys like that, or if he wants to come to Oakland, but he could potentially be another Bill Romanowski, with more leadership and less arsehole. If you want to change the culture, that guy could help a lot, even for just a year or two. I know a FA like Osi is more talented, but that guy talks to the media way too much (like his beef with LeSean McCoy, we don't need that crap here). I doubt he does anything for the culture.

Last edited 01/25/2013 6:13 PM by golaclips

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