Oakland Raiders’ Dennis Allen Not Racist in Terrelle Pryor Situation

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

There is a lot that can be said about Dennis Allen and the job he’s doing as the head coach of the Oakland Raiders. He’s received a tremendous amount of criticism and backlash from the fans following consecutive 4-12 seasons. Some of it is fair, some of it maybe not so much. But it comes with the job title. And though there is much valid criticism of his job performance, and a discussion should be had, one thing he absolutely does not deserve is to have it suggested that he is a racist over the situation with Terrelle Pryor.

We’ll ignore the fact that the majority of the Raiders’ roster is composed of Black players and the fact that his boss, GM Reggie McKenzie is Black. There has not been one hint that Allen is anything but a good, decent guy. However, in the minds of some, the way the situation with Pryor has played out in Oakland apparently indicates racial discrimination. Some have been very outspoken in their belief that Allen has refused to play Pryor for no other reason than the color of his skin. Even worse are the conspiracy theories floating around which claim that Allen called offensive plays with the specific intent of getting Pryor injured. The garbage being thrown around about the situation makes the garbage that was thrown around by Pryor’s former agent Jerome Stanley seem tame in comparison. Sort of.

The conspiracy theories being tossed around by both Stanley and Pryor fans are as baseless as they are ridiculous. Not to mention the fact that they are contradicted by common sense, logic, and fact. Some of the tin-foil hat wearing conspiracy theorists have seemingly forgotten that Pryor was named the team’s starting coming out of camp. Not Matt Flynn. Not Matt McGloin. Pryor was the starter to open the season and it was only an injury to the quarterback that allowed Flynn to get into a game — and bomb spectacularly — to begin with. It was another injury later in the season that opened the door for McGloin. If not for injuries, Pryor likely would have started every game of the season. If Allen were truly a racist who didn’t want a Black person under center for his team — as some very loudly insist that he is — wouldn’t he have found or manufactured some reason why Pryor lost the camp battle and started Flynn from the beginning? Of course, that seems to be applying simple logic to a situation that very clearly lacks it.

The idea that Allen was calling plays with the intention of getting Pryor injured is as absurd as the charges of racism are. That sort of Machiavellian scheme would only have been effective had Pryor actually been running the plays Allen called. One of the team’s biggest, ongoing issues with Pryor has been that he doesn’t know the playbook as well as he should, and that he improvises far too much. It’s not Allen’s supposed racist intent that led to Pryor’s injuries, it’s the player’s own freelancing style. Pryor has been his own worst enemy and his history with injuries have more to do with his playing style than some of racist conspiracy in Oakland.

Despite what some seem to believe, there is no grand, racist conspiracy in Oakland designed to keep Pryor down. It’s a simple case of square peg, round hole. It’s just a bad fit. Nothing more, nothing less. Making more of than that, especially by accusing Allen of racism — simply because some people don’t like how a situation involving their favorite player is playing out — is cheap, low, and entirely repugnant. Of course there is still a problem with racism in this country. Unfortunately so. And we’d be naive to think otherwise. But throwing the race card out where it very clearly does not belong only makes the issue worse. Even more than that though, it undermines those people who actually are forced to deal with racial discrimination in their everyday lives.

Dennis Allen is many things. He may even be a bad head coach. But what he isn’t, is a racist.

 

Kevin Saito is a fiction writer, sports junkie, history nerd, and NFL Contributor to RantSports.com  He’s just a “clown with an opinion,” and you can follow him on Twitter, Facebook, or on Google 


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  • $$MAN RETURNS!!

    What you fail to comprehend is that DA is BIASED towards Black QB’s. That is what the argument is about. He prefers a white pocket passing qb and has went out of his way in setting TP up to FAIL and ANOINT THE QB POSITION TO his guys like FLYNN & NOW THIS YR WITH SCHAUB.

    • Marc Guillory

      Dude, WTH are you talking about? DA benched and cut Flynn

    • Gregg Brennan

      That’s a bunch of crap dude. Flynn didn’t even win the job out of training camp. If DA was biased towards black QB’s, why would he name Pryor the starter in the first place? He would have had Pryor coming out as third string or just cut him outright last year. Face facts, TP is NOT a starting caliber QB in the NFL.

      • $$MAN RETURNS!!

        The job was Flynn’s. Even when he stunk it up vs the Bears in preseason, DA simply stated Flynn had a ” sore arm”, he NEVER NAMED PRYOR the starter vs the Colts, citing this gives the team a ” competitive advantage” which was simply BULLSHAT for if that was the case, why didn’t he do the same thing when MM was going to start?

        • saito8204

          So it comes down to his announcement? Who started the season? Pryor. Not Flynn. If DA was a racist, Pryor would have ridden the bench the entire year and would never have gotten a sniff of the field. It was injury that took him out… not some imagined racist plot.

    • saito8204

      And you can back up this assertion with fact? What evidence do you have that DA is discriminating against Pryor for the color of his skin? No, what I’m failing to comprehend here are arguments like these, that throw out charges of racism, simply because a player you like isn’t being played the way you’d like him to be played. That’s the only think that’s incomprehensible to me here.

      • $$MAN RETURNS!!

        This goes way back to 2012 playa, if you want me to map it out to u, I sure can.

        • saito8204

          Fire away. This should be entertaining.

  • Marc Guillory

    This story is bullsh*t. TP is a terrible QB. If he was good enough to play, he’d be playing. Very critical of DA, but have no doubt dude wants to win. Perfect example is him benching Flynn after the atrocity he delivered at QB, and putting in Pryor. He demoted and then cut Flynn.

    • saito8204

      Not exactly sure what you’re saying is bullsh*t here. Unless I’m mistaken, you and I are saying the same thing. TP is a terrible QB and that’s what led to him being benched and now cut… DA wants to win. So I’m not exactly sure what you’re saying is bullsh*t here since we’re essentially saying the same thing.

      • $$MAN RETURNS!!

        DA wants to win yes, but he’d rather lose with MM than win with Pryor.

        • saito8204

          That’s just an absurd and completely baseless statement.

      • Marc Guillory

        Yes, I was saying that the ‘story’ or ‘idea’ that DA has a biased based on race is bullsh*t. And, I suppose I’ll comment to $$MAN, that’s just an asinine statement. Again, DA benched MF, and inserted TP, and gave him a shot, even after he threw that absurd INT against INDY, that could have reshaped the entire season. In any eveny=t, TP is all we had, and MM was such a surprise, still raw, but more of what we want to see at QB

    • $$MAN RETURNS!!

      He did Flynn a favor and saved him further embarrassment here by cutting him. It really was stupid for he was already paid, should have kept him and used as tradebait prior to the deadline. Also, he didn’t bench Flynn, he used the excuse of a “Sore Arm” when Matt stunk it up vs the Bears in that preseason game and then set Pryor to get knocked out Vs Denver so he could start “his guy” vs Washington.