Report: “Major Shake-Up” Coming For Raiders, “Significant Heads Expected to Roll”

The Raiders surprised a lot of people (though not everyone) on Thursday night with the selection of offensive tackle Alex Leatherwood with the no. 17 overall pick. Time will tell if the pick was a good one, but most seem to believe the Raiders could have traded down and still ended up with Leatherwood.

Maybe the Raiders would get a little leeway from critics if it weren’t for the questionable returns from first-round picks Clelin Ferrell, Johnathan Abram, and Damon Arnette, but an embarrassingly-bad defense should never have as many first-round picks (and expensive free agency) as what the Raiders had a year ago.

Now it sounds like someone holding clout within the Raiders’ organization might be losing patience.

A Pro Football Network report on the morning after the draft’s first round seemed to indicate that something might be brewing among the top decision-makers within the Raiders’ organization.

“Word in league circles is a major shake-up in the Las Vegas Raiders’ front office will be coming soon after the draft and significant heads are expected to roll,” PFN‘s Tony Pauline reported on Friday morning. “The pick of Alex Leatherwood in the middle of Round 1 last night, a player they could have traded down and selected, is opening a lot of wounds and seems to be the final straw. Additionally, I’m also hearing about a lot of friction between major players in their front office.”

“This follows the selection of Damon Arnette in the middle of Round 1 in 2020 — a player I reported earlier this week has one foot out the door — and the surprise selection of Clelin Ferrell with the fourth pick of the 2019 NFL Draft,” Pauline continued. “Last night follows the trend of players the Raiders select much earlier than their grades warranted.”

The report doesn’t say which “significant” members of the Raiders’ organization might be in trouble, but it’s a safe assumption that Jon Gruden’s $100 million contract has afforded him job security for the forseeable future.

Beyond Gruden, who is left?

Mike Mayock is the GM, but everyone knows Gruden has final say on personnel decisions. So if Gruden isn’t happy about the Raiders last few drafts, he’s in a difficult position to place blame on someone else.

Is it possible that owner Mark Davis is becoming impatient with the way things are playing out in Las Vegas?

Organizations always have some friction, but maybe Davis isn’t happy about the way things have played out in the draft over the last few years. Davis was in the draft room on Thursday night, so he would have witnessed first hand how the team reached the decision to draft Leatherwood… who does, by the way, have the perfect name to be a legendary Raider.

Whatever the case, we’ll know soon enough how much truth there is to the story. The fact that it came out on the morning after the draft’s first round is a little odd, but when it comes to the Raiders, nothing would surprise.

twitter: @raidersbeat


18 thoughts on “Report: “Major Shake-Up” Coming For Raiders, “Significant Heads Expected to Roll”

  1. Mayock or Gruden? It would be interesting to find out exactly which picks have Gruden’s fingerprints on them. Because the Raiders seem to do an awful lot of inexplicable things in the draft. But given how bad the Raiders have drafted, it’s unlikely that Gruden was behind them all.

  2. This comes as absolutely no surprise to me and I’m sure many when again for the same exact thing I said when they announced the name Clelin Ferrell…”WHO” to the name Alex Leatherwood and immediately scrolled way down my list of best available…reported on the draft show that there was a 60% chance he would still be available in their 2nd pick in the 2nd round ‼️‼️‼️😳 What❓❓RUFKM❓‼️‼️‼️PISSED AS A FAN CAN BE,TIRED OF THIS B.S. MAYOCK NEEDS TO GO‼️‼️‼️🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬

  3. Unless its the biggest problem of all (gruden) it wont matter. The decade of darkness has 6 more years to go after this season. Everyone else in the organization is cannon fodder and will get thown under the bus to shift blame when things inevitably goes sideways.

  4. As good as Leatherwood may end up being, consensus is that he would probably still be around Day 2. That said, with all the help the defense needs and with quality defensive players still available, this pick at this point makes no sense at all! And the fact that a similar scenario has unfolded for three consecutive years (Ground Hog Day anyone?) is more than head scratching. Let the head rolling begin! And spare nobody, Gruden included.

  5. I call BS! ANYBODY in the Raider organization already knew who they were picking. Hell, I had them picking Leatherwood – he was the BEST OL on the board at the time for what the Raiders NEEDED – PERIOD. The Raiders have already signed SIX DL studs on the off season AND gutted their OL. This was a no brainer and just because SOME in the business were too stupid or just hate the Raiders, does NOT make it a bad selection. Minnesota drafted an OL man with the 23rd selection and they would have/could have picked Leatherwood. Nobody in-between there would trade with the Raiders just to move up three slots.
    Leatherwood is a STUD, can play multiple spots, is smart, a winner, mean and healthy as a horse – the BEST on the board at the time.
    So I say that there will be NO major shake up coming and that this is a blatant anti-Raider article. Furthermore, I think that if there is NOT a major shake up, this ‘sports writer’ should be fired for yelling fire in a theater… time and time again. Enough already

  6. Just More BS… to many “reporters” love to hear themselves lie about shite since they have no writing skill or inside contacts.

  7. i love this story, Mark please fire Gruden and Mayock now before they **** up the rest of the draft

  8. These guys are the worst drafters in the NFL, and we have passed up on so many great players for bums! Time to get a real GM and hold Gruden accountable for his bad coaching decisions vs him mucking up the draft, free agency, and personnel assignments. We will never get better until this happens. Mark Davis…fire Mayock and strip Gruden! Just do it baby!

  9. While I do agree that perhaps Alex Leatherwood could have been had in the second round as opposed to the first, that point is now moot. However, what is of some real consequence is what happens from here on. I believe that both Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock should be replaced and allowed to return to their television analyst jobs where Jon Gruden can once again have all the answers and Mike Mayock can do what he does best, speculate. One fact is for sure, there absolutely are other people that can coach a football team and evaluate talent. With that said, may the Eric Bieniemy and Louis Riddick campaign begin as replacements for Gruden and Mayock. Surely, Mark Davis could save money by eliminating Jon Gruden’s 10 million dollar a year contract and get rid of this polarizing and LOSING coach. The whole world has witnessed Jon Gruden’s coaching and personnell decisions, for some time now, and as Bill Parcells used to say; “You ARE what your record says that you are.” Any questions?

  10. Ed has it absolutely right.

    Column: Value of Raiders Picks Will Be Proven on the Field
    By Ed Graney
    Las Vegas Review-Journal

    Let’s talk value when it comes to the NFL draft.

    Work with me. Had the Raiders on Thursday used their first-round pick at No. 17 on Texas Christian safety Trevon Moehrig, coach Jon Gruden and general manager Mike Mayock would have been universally lauded.

    The same positive reaction would have come Friday had the team selected offensive lineman Alex Leatherwood from Alabama in the second round at No. 43.

    As it is, Alex Leatherwood went at 17 and Trevon Moehrig at 43.

    Within a span of 24 hours, Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock were ripped for again reaching from Summerlin to Henderson when it came to the first round and yet applauded for landing what most believe to be a huge steal in the second.

    They were criticized for not trading back and taking Alex Leatherwood at a later spot and praised for trading up to grab Trevon Moehrig, considered the draft’s best safety.

    Most assigned the Raiders an F on Thursday and an A on Friday — also my respective high school grades in math and English.

    “I ignore (outside opinions) 100 percent, except that it’s part of my job to understand league value,” Mike Mayock said. “It might sound weird, but my background at NFL Network helps me with that. I can tell when a player is probably going to be a third- or fourth-round type of player. That’s what I did for 18 years. I studied all 32 teams.

    “I have a good feel for what league value is versus what we consider to be Raiders value. Alex Leatherwood had a big grade for us. I knew it was going to be controversial, but I really don’t care.”

    The only important question: Can these two guys play?

    Because no matter where those who aggregate dozens of draft boards each year believed Alex Leatherwood and Trevon Moehrig should be selected, they can’t be misses.

    Their’s are serious positions of need. Alex Leatherwood will get the initial look at starting right tackle on a revamped line. Trevon Moehrig is thought the free safety desperately needed in new defensive coordinator Gus Bradley’s scheme.

    One (Alex Leatherwood) is the Outland Trophy winner for the nation’s best interior lineman. The other (Trevon Moehrig) is the Jim Thorpe Award winner as its top defensive back. They need to play like it. Right away.

    If they do — voila! Value.

    If you want to suggest Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock draft as if they are the smartest duo going and think they know more than anyone across the league, I’ll buy it.

    But while much goes into determining draft value — how teams assemble their board, what salary fits a certain position, confidence in evaluations by coaches and scouts — it still matters most how players ultimately perform.

    Much to prove

    Several of Jon Gruden’s first-round selections since returning to the franchise in 2018 still must prove worthy of such placement. Some really have a long way to go. Most were selected far sooner than their allocated value by data analysts. Heck, cornerback Damon Arnette went 44 spots ahead of where most projected him. Much to prove there, for sure.

    The Raiders on Friday also selected Buffalo defensive end Malcolm Koonce with the 79th pick and Virginia Tech defensive back Divine Deablo at 80. Somewhere out there in Analytics Land, folks are determining if such picks were of good value.

    You know who doesn’t care about any of it? The guy who was supposed to be selected in the first round but wasn’t.

    “I believed that it was going to happen then, but I didn’t let it affect me,” Trevon Moehrig said. “It’s a blessing just to be here, to get this opportunity and to play for the Raiders. So, slipping into the second is not a big deal. I’m excited and blessed.”

    Can’t put a value on that attitude.

    Ed Graney is a Sigma Delta Chi Award winner for sports column writing and can be reached at [email protected] or 702-383-4618. He can be heard on “The Press Box,” ESPN Radio 100.9 FM and 1100 AM, from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Monday through Friday. Follow @edgraney on Twitter.

  11. I. Have. Been. A. Raiders. Fan. My. Whole. Life. And. I. Agree. This. Team. Does. Not. Draft. Good. Some. Body. Has. To. Be. Held. Accountable

  12. Anyone thinking Mayock had much input on any draft picks I think are mistaken. He was hired to be the buffer between Gruden and Davis. Mayock showed much better drafter when he was a draft analyst. Other than a couple of pics he has shown well in the past. Look at Grudens history. Hes never been a good drafter. For what Davis is paying Gruden he could have had his pick of HOF coaches around the league. 21 will be an 8-9 season and I hope it spells the end of him unless he got a all guaranteed deal

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