Just over a month ago Reggie McKenzie said he wanted to see what Terrelle Pryor can do. Here we are with one last chance to cheer on the Raiders and it just so happens Pryor has just one chance to impress. In case you haven’t noticed McKenzie hasn’t been very impressed by the final draft class presided over by Al Davis.
DeMarcus Van Dyke and Joe Barksdale were shown the exit early on. Chimdi Chekwa was cut then re-signed to the practice squad. Taiwan Jones, Richard Gordon and David Ausberry are virtually invisible on Sundays. About the only two men from that class that can feel safe are Stefen Wisniewski and Denarius Moore.
Pryor, of course, was a member of that class too though he was taken in the supplemental draft. None the less he’s another guy McKenzie didn’t and in all likelihood wouldn’t have drafted.
So while McKenzie expressed his desire to see Pryor play it should be taken as more of an audition than an unveiling.
Today isn’t the start of the Terrelle Pryor era. Instead consider this more of a final exam. McKenzie’s first year on the job has largely been a weeding out process. Pryor’s first career start could be last in Oakland for all we know. Come Monday the season of change begins and just which way those winds blow will be impacted by what happens today.
Of course since this is the NFL Pryor isn’t only trying to show his new boss what he can bring to the franchise, he’s also putting his talents on display for the entire league. Just how the Raiders utilize and trust Pryor this afternoon will speak volumes towards where his Silver and Black days are headed.
A hideous showing could be all McKenzie needs to know as perhaps another member of the final Davis class could be soon gone.
An impressive performance by Pryor with flashes of brilliance will only incur the wrath of Raider Nation who will wonder why their young QB didn’t take the stage sooner.
Such is the life of an NFL general manager, a job where every decision is met with scrutiny. But that’s what McKenzie knew he was getting into and this is the line Pryor must walk. While today could be the start of something big it could very well be the end of something that never was.