Raiders OTA's are in full swing, making the first time in Derek Carr's pro career he isn't having to learn an entirely new offense. Granted this is just his third offseason as a pro, and the second for Jack Del Rio's coaching staff, but having the same coaching staff and quarterback again this season is important.
If it feels like it's been a while since the Raiders have been able to make that claim, it's because it has been an extremely long time. To be exact it's been 13 years.
This is expected to be the first time since 2003 -- with the Raiders fresh from their Super Bowl appearance when Bill Callahan was the coach and Rich Gannon was coming off an MVP season -- that this franchise has had the same coaching staff and starting quarterback for two straight seasons.
Not coincidentally the Raiders haven't had a winning record once in that time.
Here is what the last 13 seasons have looked like from a head coach and quarterback standpoint:
2015: Jack Del Rio, Derek Carr
2014: Dennis Allen/Tony Sparano, Derek Carr
2013: Dennis Allen, Terrelle Pryor/Matt McGloin
2012: Dennis Allen, Carson Palmer
2011: Hue Jackson, Jason Campbell/Carson Palmer
2010: Tom Cable, Jason Campbell
2009: Tom Cable, JaMarcus Russell/Bruce Gradkowski
2008: Lane Kiffin/Tom Cable, JaMarcus Russell
2007: Lane Kiffin, Josh McCown/Dante Culpepper
2006: Art Shell, Aaron Brooks/Andrew Walter
2005: Norv Turner, Kerry Collins
2004: Norv Turner, Rich Gannon/Kerry Collins
2003: Bill Callahan, Rich Gannon/Rick Mirer
2002: Bill Callahan, Rich Gannon
This rogue's gallery of head coach and quarterback combos along with the Raiders' 63-145 record over that time (average 4.8-11.1 per season record) is indicative of just how important continuity in coaching and quarterbacking can be.
Add that the Raiders will also be returning both starting wide receivers and I would expect to see a level of familiarity between staff, quarterback, and receiving corps from the start of training camp we have not seen in Oakland for a very, very long time. It's the formula for the team breaking out of their long slump.