ESPN analyst Darren Rovell published a photo of the purported new mascot in a tweet Sunday. CBS Sports quickly derided it as "perhaps the most inept-looking mascot the world [has] ever seen."
The Oakland Raiders will be unveiling a new mascot. Here he is: The Raider Rusher pic.twitter.com/XERNYh6xMV
— darren rovell (@darrenrovell) September 22, 2013
However, Rovell seems confident the character is a team mascot on some level.
Further supporting that point: Each of the 32 NFL teams has a Nickelodeon-friendly cartoon mascot (the Broncos' is particularly bad), but according to CBS Sports, the Raiders is the only team so far to have converted the cartoon to a real-life character.
Deadspin speculates the new mascot will likely remain in kids' areas around the stadium. In fact, keeping the new mascot off the field would be a good thing: Given the NFL's ever-more-strict policies on players not leading with their helmets, Raider Rusher's helmet-heavy physique would be a big problem.
We've reached out to the Raiders for clarification and will update this piece if/when they respond. In the meantime, per the Atlantic Wire, The Raiders are rumored to make an official announcement on Tuesday.