Maintaining your vision, passion and dedication after nine straight seasons without a winning record is impossible without changing the way you conduct your business. With new young talent, new veteran leadership, new coaches and a new attitude with much-needed direction and discipline, the Oakland Raiders are inching closer to ending their 10-year playoff drought.
Last week at the American Century Celebrity Golf Championship in Lake Tahoe, quarterback Carson Palmer said he believes this is a playoff team and General Manager Reggie McKenzie seems to see eye-to-eye with his sentiments.
“I think after being around these guys the whole offseason, being around the coaching staff and the players, I definitely think we have the makeup of being a playoff team,” McKenzie said during a Wednesday morning interview. ”I feel what Carson is saying, as far as where we’re headed. We’re headed in the direction to where we can get there.”
This is a head-up tone for McKenzie and co. to take as the team tries to build off its back-to-back 8-8 seasons.
“But I’m encouraged by what I saw during the offseason, No. 1 being that everybody seems to be on the same page,” McKenzie added. “We just need to keep progressing. We can make this happen.”
Indicating postseason aspirations in August is a good decision for this up-and-coming new regime. It gets the club pumped without setting unobtainable (or at least lofty) goals like guaranteeing a Super Bowl Championship. Leave that up to Rex Ryan or Jerry Jones.