Former Player Says Del Rio Runs The Raiders Defense, Calls Norton Jr. The “Scapegoat”

The Raiders defense has been bad for years, but according to former NFL receiver Steve Smith, firing defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. wasn’t the answer.

Via his verified twitter account, Smith said Wednesday that head coach Jack Del Rio has been “calling all the shots” on defense, not Norton. Smith also says general manager Reggie McKenzie paid the “wrong guys” in free agency and called Norton the “scapegoat” for the team’s problems.

Former Raiders linebacker Malcolm Smith (who played for Norton in Seattle and Oakland) was in agreement with Smith’s comments. McKenzie parted ways with Smith, who was largely ineffective in Oakland, after last season.

Good chance this one (from another of Norton’s former players in Seattle) was also directed at Del Rio.

While it’s true that Del Rio has been involved with the defense, it’s a bit a stretch to suggest he’s calling all the shots. Del Rio doesn’t call plays from the sideline and most would agree that Norton was lucky to return as defensive coordinator this season.

It’s worth noting that each of the players tweeting (with the exception of Smith) have close ties to Norton.

Whatever the case, it’s another bump in the road to what has been one of the most dramatized seasons the Raiders have ever endured – and that’s no small statement considering it’s, you know, the Raiders.

twitter: @raidersbeat


8 thoughts on “Former Player Says Del Rio Runs The Raiders Defense, Calls Norton Jr. The “Scapegoat”

  1. Two disgruntled seahawks players spilling spew…Malcolm Smith, RETIRE, you are done. The raiders gave you a chance and you were garbage! SEATTLE AND THE RAIDERS were right to get rid of your sorry a@@.. Wagner, come on man! GET OFF NORTON’S …, not a good look….Norton should have been fired LAST YEAR! Bruce Irving..SHUT UP BEEEEEECH!!!

  2. Del Rio and Carr are Trump Voters. It split the lockeroom after Trump called the players ” Sons of bitches” before the Redskins game.

    1. Yeah. I know Mrs. Del Rio voted for Trump, so I assume he did as well. Carr, I don’t know. I find it hard to respect anyone who would vote for Trump. Economy and status quo aside, when you hear the guy spew hatred and racism you know what he is saying and what he stands for, making you culpable. Just take a look back at Nazi Germany, and you will see history repeating itself.

      1. I didn’t vote for Trump but he has suprised me with all that he is doing to BETTER this country. Just what “hatred and racism” has he spewed? Calling over paid disrespectful players SOB’s? Trying to ban radical islamists from coming here? Protecting our borders? How are these actions racist? The majority of racism is coming from groups like BLM and antifa.

    2. Yeah, it’s all because Carr and Del Rio voted for Trump, allegedly. Nothing to do with ACTUAL coaching and playing.

  3. They are sons of bitches. Coach Tomlin is a giant POS making a war veteran apologize for standing for the flag. Coach Carrol is a 9/11 truther , anybody connected to Seahawks are twisted . Trump 2020. Enjoy your 401k.

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