Raiders Owner Mark Davis: Walking a Tightrope

Terrance Biggs
Cover32

Mark Davis is not a popular figure in the Raiders organization.  Similarly, he does not draw cheers or positive acknowledgement. Be that as it may, he should receive a great deal of praise and appreciation from fans. Like it or not, Davis’ positives outweigh the negatives. While he may deserve the scorn, there is ample room for congratulations.

Organization: For the first time in recent memory, the Oakland Raiders have a structure with talented individuals at various levels, working to succeed. No longer a small circle of power, Oakland runs like a business. Despite the fact that RaiderNation loved Al Davis, the last few years in his regime were brutal. Bad drafts, awful coaching hires and free agent busts plagued the team. During Mark Davis’ limited run as the owner, the team didn’t appear to run into the same difficulty.

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Hands Off: As mentioned, Mark Davis put the right people in place to do their jobs. More importantly, he stays far away from the football decision. In other words, Reggie McKenzie enjoys free reign to run the team however he sees fit. If you look around the league, that isn’t the case. Dean Spanos, Bob McNair, and Jimmy Haslam all give their two cents. Know what that’s earned them? Zero Super Bowls, wasted millions of dollars and ruined drafts. For example, Haslam said a homeless man convinced him to draft Johnny Manziel. Can you imagine the heat Mark Davis would receive for doing that?

Notwithstanding his plusses, Davis does himself no favors. Although the Raiders need a stadium upgrade, the way Davis goes about that business isn’t smooth. That is to say, looking into every potential lead and thirsty city screams desperation. Granted, O.co continues to deteriorate. Yet, going full bore into Carson, cozying up to Adelson and visiting San Antonio reeks of rushed thinking.  With this in mind, choosing one location and focusing on it is the better look. If Vegas presents the most certainty, the Raiders needed to hone in there.

In addition, fans have a legitimate beef with him in 2017. The marquee game of the year, versus the Patriots occurs in Mexico City. Why does he continue to agree to taking home games away from his team. Especially, a matchup versus the reigning champions.

In the final analysis, Mark Davis lives in a precarious spot. While a potential oasis awaits the Raiders in Vegas, Oakland based fans will feel abandoned. Furthermore, leaving a massive media market for a much smaller area is peculiar. At the same time, Davis looks like he’s doing what’s best for his organization. In particular, looking for the best deal is smart. Plus, turning down hundreds of millions of dollars isn’t the swiftest thought. Truthfully, Mark Davis does not care that fans insult him. In the end, it’s his team. Consequently, fans’ only role is to cheer for the Raiders. Whether he hears the voice of RaiderNation is another debate.

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