Rich Gannon rips into Oakland Raiders culture, questions team leadership

Rich Gannon bleeds silver and black. And yet he vomited all over his former team on Wednesday.

The former Oakland Raiders quarterback appeared on SiriusXM NFL Radio (per CSN Bay Area) following the firing of head coach Dennis Allen, went into the shotgun formation and started firing away.

Little was spared in his criticism, but Gannon focused on the team's lack of leadership and its false-advertising motto that has stuck with the franchise by reputation only.

"They got this sign in front of the building that says: 'Commitment to excellence.' They ought to take it down," Gannon said. "It's false advertising right now. There's no commitment to excellence. There's a commitment to mediocrity right now. And that's the problem. You need to change the culture and the environment."

Ouch. Gannon wants to see some new faces in the building and that the firing of Allen isn't nearly enough.

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"You need to bring in some people that are capable of rooting out the issues," Gannon said, "and it takes people that know the history of why they have not won. You need to bring in some people that have been there and done it. Then maybe things will change.

"But it's not going to change when you keep replacing coaches, keep replacing quarterbacks and keep running different veteran free agents through the building. That's not how you rebuild an organization. And the thing that drives me crazy is that they spend millions and millions and millions of dollars on the payroll."

Some have suggested that GM Reggie McKenzie — and not Allen — is the one who has been most responsible for the team being mired in the dregs of the league the past few seasons. Gannon didn't name McKenzie specifically but did not spare much and seemed to suggest that there were some folks in Oakland who were stealing paychecks.

"There's people out in Oakland, in that building, players, coaches, front office, people in business, accounting: stealing! They ought to give the check back," Gannon said. "The product on the field is terrible. And when you lose like that, how can you go to the bank and cash the check? You should be embarrassed."

Double ouch!

The Jon Gruden rumors are underway, and Gannon has close ties to Gruden. Some have suggested that Gruden — if he were to come in and try to clean up the mess in Oakland — could even bring Gannon on as one of his assistant coaches. If that were to happen, expect a culture change back to the last era of Raiders glory. Gannon says that part needs to happen.

"You're not winning because you have players and coaches and people in the building that have become comfortable with the process of losing. It's okay to lose out there, it's okay. It's not a big deal," he said. "In other places, it's simply not tolerated. And when it gets to the point where they don't tolerate it anymore, it's unacceptable, and we run people out of the building who haven't figured that out...and then bring in players who care, and players who work and players who aren't going to tolerate that, then you'll get the results you so long desire.

"But they don't know how to do it and it drives me crazy."

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Eric Edholm is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!