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#pounditWednesday, September 23, 2020

Raiders GM Reggie McKenzie denies that Jon Gruden is forcing him out

Jon Gruden

A popular narrative developing around the Oakland Raiders is that general manager Reggie McKenzie is being marginalized by head coach Jon Gruden, who has most of the organizational power.

McKenzie battled back against that chatter on Monday when announcing the Amari Cooper trade, denying that Gruden is trying to force him out of his role with the organization.

McKenzie has been Oakland’s general manager since 2012. Gruden’s arrival before this season has come with a distinct shift in organizational philosophy, with the team trading Khalil Mack and now Cooper to accumulate draft picks and free up cap space. Gruden himself denied talk of a Cooper trade, and it came to fruition, so either he was deflecting or completely out of the loop. The former is much more likely, but either way, the situation is emblematic of the odd and confusing dynamic that has developed around the organization since Gruden’s arrival.

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