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Jets Front Office Man Brian Heimerdinger a Name to Watch as Possible New Raiders GM

The Raiders have already made one major move this week, as they canned general manager Reggie McKenzie one day after the team scored a huge home upset over the Steelers.

They are now on the search for a new voice, and one name that you will want to watch out for is Jets director of player personnel Brian Heimerdinger, this according to Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports.

Robinson says that it’s not clear if the Raiders job will have any sort of allure around the NFL, especially given that most executives will see the gig as nothing short of being Jon Gruden‘s “puppet master.”

Heimerdinger, for his part, is currently in his third season with New York after previously spending time with the Rams and Texans.

City of Oakland Files Lawsuit Against the Raiders and NFL

What had been threatened since the first week of the season became reality Tuesday when the City of Oakland announced it has filed a federal lawsuit against the Raiders and the NFL, Paul Gutierrez of ESPN reports.

The suit, which was filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, puts into question where the Raiders will play in 2019, the season before their planned move to Las Vegas. The Raiders do not have a lease for a home next year and team owner Mark Davis has said he will not play in Oakland if a lawsuit were ever filed — though Davis has recently softened that stance.

In a news release announcing the suit, which also referred to the NFL as a “cartel,” Oakland City Attorney Barbara J. Parker “recommended and the Oakland City Council authorized filing the lawsuit to recover damages resulting from the Raiders’ illegal move to Las Vegas, including lost revenue, money that Oakland taxpayers invested in the Raiders and other costs.”

The release stated that by approving the team’s move to Las Vegas, the league was “boycotting Oakland in the marketplace for hosting a football club” and, thus, “violated federal antitrust laws while the Raiders’ move also violated the NFL’s own policies for team relocation.”

And while federal antitrust laws provide treble damages plus attorneys’ fees, the release stated, Oakland seeks a resolution for the maximum amount of damages available but will not ask the court to prevent the Raiders’ move to Las Vegas or keep the team in Oakland.

“The Raiders’ illegal move lines the pockets of NFL owners and sticks Oakland, its residents, taxpayers and dedicated fans with the bill,” Parker said in the release. “The purpose of this lawsuit is to hold the defendants accountable and help to compensate Oakland for the damages the defendants’ unlawful actions have caused and will cause to the people of Oakland.”

The civil complaint is a 49-page document and presents seven different claims against the NFL. It was filed with assistance from the law firms of Berg & Androphy and Pearson, Simon & Warshaw, LLP, which are working on a contingency basis and will not be paid unless the case is won.

Davis, meanwhile, was en route to Dallas for this week’s NFL owners meetings and unavailable for comment.

Week 14 Inactives for the Raiders Matchup with the Steelers

Here are today’s inactives for the Steelers and Raiders week 14 matchup in Oakland.

Steelers

No. 2 QB Mason Rudolph
No. 27 S Marcus Allen
No. 30 RB James Conner
No. 72 OT Zach Banner
No. 77 OT Marcus Gilbert
No. 92 LB Olasunkanmi Adeniyi
No. 96 DE L.T. Walton

Raiders

RB C.J. Anderson
WR Keon Hatcher
DT Maurice Hurst
CB Montrel Meander
T Justin Murray
G/T Kelechi Osemele
LB Kyle Wilber

Raiders QB Derek Carr and Coach Jon Gruden Get Into it on the Sidelines

The Raiders and Cardinals are in the midst of a Sunday battle in Arizona, and Oakland QB Derek Carr and coach Jon Gruden are not exactly seeing eye to eye (nothing new).

Camera’s caught highlights of the two having a ‘heated’ debate on the sidelines during the affair, as Gruden didn’t look too happy with his quarterback.

Carr called two time outs in a row, which was a penalty.

A report from the Raiders’ local radio broadcast said tight end Lee Smith grabbed Gruden by the back of the neck in an effort to calm him down as he yelled at Carr.

Carr has mostly played it safe today, going into halftime having completed 6-of-11 passes for 56 yards, with two touchdowns and no interceptions. Perhaps Gruden would like to see Carr do more, but the Raiders and Cardinals are tied 14-14, which means the Raiders have played better in the first half today than they have in most games this season.

Here’s video of the issues between Carr and Gruden:

Raiders WR Jordy Nelson Out for Sunday’s Affair Against Arizona

The Raiders will be without one of their top targets on Sunday when they take on the Arizona Cardinals, as the team won’t have the services of wide out Jordy Nelson.

Nelson this season has 25 catches for 353 yards and three touchdowns.

Jon Gruden Agrees with Raiders Owner Mark Davis on State of Team: “I Feel Mark’s Pain”

A day after Raiders owner Mark Davis gave Jon Gruden a vote of confidence, calling Gruden’s hiring as coach the “endgame” for him, Gruden reciprocated the feeling, Paul Gutierrez of ESPN reports.

“I feel Mark’s pain,” Gruden said in his weekly media conference, after the Raiders’ 20-6 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers dropped Oakland’s record to 1-8 in Gruden’s first season back on the sideline following nine seasons in ESPN’s Monday Night Football booth.

“I talk to Mark after every game and these are unpleasant conversations. It’s tough, man, we want to win. We want to win. We also want to do right by this organization and some of these decisions have been really tough, but I want to deliver for him and his family, certainly, and this organization and right now, it’s tough. But it’s great to have him support me and I appreciate it. But I feel the same way he does — I just want to win.”

The Raiders are Awful; and Owner Mark Davis Says It’s All His Fault

In a wide-ranging interview with ESPN after the Raiders’ 20-6 loss to the Chargers on Sunday, owner Mark Davis accepted blame for the team’s 1-8 start, Paul Gutierrez of ESPN reports.

Davis also touched on topics from the Khalil Mack trade to where he hopes his team will play in 2019 to how years of draft misses have contributed to where they are now to his belief in coach Jon Gruden and how general manager Reggie McKenzie might fit in the future. Davis also acknowledged that the Raiders lost their way in last season’s defeat at Washington, a game in which the team could not agree on how to protest during the national anthem.

“I always look in the mirror, and the buck stops with me,” Davis said during the 45-minute sitdown at a waterfront restaurant in Jack London Square. “Where this team is right now is my fault. We haven’t been able to build a 22-man roster. We haven’t been able to give this team a chance to win because the Reconstruction failed. We failed from 2014 on to have a roster right now.”

Davis was referring to his two-phase, four-year Deconstruction/Reconstruction project, which began in 2012, months after the death of Al Davis, under McKenzie. Davis said a team should be able to get five players, three from the draft and two in free agency, every year that would serve as foundation pieces going forward. McKenzie was initially hamstrung because of the trade for quarterback Carson Palmer in 2011 that cost Oakland its first-rounder in 2012 and a second-rounder in 2013.

The Raiders drafted what Davis saw as legitimate foundation pieces in edge rusher Khalil Mack, quarterback Derek Carr, offensive lineman Gabe Jackson and receiver Amari Cooper in 2014 and 2015. But no such pieces in 2012, 2013, 2016 and 2017.

The trade of Mack, then, was a tough decision to make, even if it netted Oakland a package that included two first-round picks.

Davis said Oakland reached out to Mack’s agent Joel Segal after the team signed Carr to his five-year, $125 million contract in June of 2017 and presented him with a contract extension that would have made Mack the highest-paid defensive player in the NFL.

“But they decided they didn’t want to do it that early,” Davis said. “They would wait.”

Mack played the 2017 season and then Gruden was hired in January of this year. Davis said Gruden called Mack and spoke to him briefly.

“That’s the last time Jon and Khalil talked,” said Davis, who added that the Raiders again talked with Segal during the combine about an extension that would still make Mack the highest-paid defensive player in the league. Mack’s representatives countered with an offer that “was not going to happen, was not doable for us,” Davis said.

“From that point on, (Mack) would not talk to anyone in our organization,” Davis said. “Not Reggie, not Jon, not anybody.”

“Jon wanted him. Everybody thinks that Jon’s the one who wanted to get rid of him. Jon wanted him badly. Why wouldn’t you want this guy? Reggie wanted him badly. And I wanted him badly, too. But, if in fact we were going to give the type of money that we were going to give to him, and we had Derek on that type of a (contract), how were we going to go ahead and build this football team, with all the holes that we had?”

Raiders CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie Says He’s Retiring

Raiders veteran cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, a two-time Pro Bowl selection, announced his retirement in an Instagram post Tuesday, ESPN reports.

The 32-year-old veteran, who was playing in his 11th NFL season with the Oakland Raiders, said he was “at peace with my decision. Y’all may not understand and that’s kool!!!”

Though he didn’t play a snap in the Raiders’ loss to the Colts on Sunday, Rodgers-Cromartie was active for seven games this season, making eight tackles and forcing one fumble. He had played the previous four seasons for the New York Giants, following previous stops with the Denver Broncos, Philadelphia Eagles and Arizona Cardinals.