For better or worse this is a brand new era of Raiders football. Whether or not the Mark Davis-Reggie McKenzie-Dennis Allen era is for the better remains to be seen. One way to help that process would be addition by subtraction. Namely by removing one incompetent offensive coordinator from the equation.
But I’m not going to let this turn into another rant about what the hell has happened to a once explosive offense.
This is about Mark Davis doing something that his father should have done a long time ago.
Walking in his father’s footsteps is no doubt daunting. However Mark Davis is proving himself unafraid to do things his father would have never considered. From hiring a GM to opening practice to the fans Mark Davis is making bold moves to reinvent the Raiders.
Now comes perhaps his boldest move of all.
CSN Bay Area reports that this Sunday Marcus Allen will light the Al Davis flame prior to the Raiders taking on the Steelers.
Yeah. You read that.
Marcus Allen, the same Marcus Allen that Al Davis would sooner watch burn than help put out the flames even if he had a gut full of Budweiser, will honor the memory of Davis this Sunday.
I’m getting goose bumps thinking of the moment. For me the Allen-Davis feud was personal. I grew up as an L.A. Raider fan so Allen was a big part of why I fell in love with the Silver and Black. Watching his career as a Raider fall apart was painful and perplexing.
No matter what Allen did off the field (there is no shortage of theories) that so angered Davis it was a shame that it boiled over to the field.
But we’re not going to talk about the past. This is about moving forward which is exactly what Mark Davis is doing by inviting Allen to honor Al. Forgiveness if among the most important humanistic traits. We all have someone or something in our live that is unresolved, hovering over our heads like JaMarcus Russell’s contract, weighing us down like…well…JaMarcus Russell.
Sometimes forgiving and forgetting is the best remedy there is for what ails us.
Much props to Mark Davis for having the Wilsons to even dare to offer Allen the opportunity. Same for Allen and his willingness to pay tribute to a man that no doubt caused so much angst in his life.
This is a great lesson for everyone, not just Raider Nation. Even in death we have the power to forgive those that have wronged us or that we carry a grudge against.
Now if only the Raiders can pay proper respect to the moment by digging deep and beating the Steelers. Better yet, if only I could find it in my heart to forgive JaMarcus Russell. Something tells me that’s one man Mark Davis won’t be inviting to the Coliseum anytime soon. Another thing about forgiveness is that time heals all wounds. The Russell wound is still pretty fresh. Let’s give that one another decade or two.