AFC Franchise Notes: Raiders Owner Davis Likely To Bring Back GM McKenzie, Coach Allen
In San Jose, Tim Kawakami reported Raiders Owner Mark Davis "gave every indication that he is likely" to bring back coach Dennis Allen for '14. GM Reggie McKenzie is "on even firmer ground." Davis said that he "expects to meet with Allen probably next week." Davis when asked if there is a scenario in which Allen is not the Raiders' coach any longer said, "There’s always a scenario, you know that. I don’t know, what if John Madden decided he wanted to be a coach again?" Davis when asked if he had discussed with former Raiders coach Jon Gruden the possibility of returning said, "I’ll never talk about what I’m doing in those respects. It’s such a competitive business, there’s no reason anyone should know what I’m thinking until I do it" (MERCURYNEWS.com, 12/30). Kawakami wrote while "all signs do point to the Raiders maintaining GM/coach stability" into '14, Davis also is "keeping his options open, at least for a few more days" (MERCURYNEWS.com, 12/31).
CRUCIAL CALL: In Nashville, David Climer wrote Titans Exec VP & GM Ruston Webster's assessment and input on the performance of coach Mike Munchak "will have a major bearing on whether Munchak is retained or fired by the Titans’ new ownership group." What Webster recommends "will greatly define his career" as Titans GM. Climer asked, "Can Webster divorce himself from the close working relationship he has had with Munchak for the past two years and take an unbiased look at the head coach’s overall performance?" If Munchak is fired, Webster would be "the point man on identifying potential replacements and assessing their level of interest," and would be "directly involved in the hiring process." Climer: "Is he up to all that?" (Nashville TENNESSEAN, 1/1).
PLAYING THE WAITING GAME: ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports sources "doubt" the Dolphins will fire GM Jeff Ireland, though "nothing has been fully decided yet” (“SportsCenter,” ESPN, 1/2). ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported Ireland's status may not be known the report "from the independent investigator of the Jonathan Martin-Richie Incognito scandal" is released. Mortensen: "That’s not expected until after the Super Bowl” (“Mike & Mike,” ESPN Radio, 1/2).
HOLDING THE PURSE STRINGS: In Jacksonville, Gene Frenette wrote while fans "love free-agent splashes," Jaguars GM Dave Caldwell "must resist the temptation to spend wildly." That has "gotten this franchise in trouble before." When the Jaguars "position themselves to be a consistent playoff contender, then signing prized free agents might be more risk-friendly." Even with an estimated $20M in salary cap space "as a starting point, Caldwell has every intention of being a disciplined spender" with RB Maurice Jones-Drew and when NFL unrestricted free agency begins on March 11 (JACKSONVILLE.com, 12/30).