There were only a few established assistants from the Raiders’ staff last season. The short list consisted mainly of the two Assistant Head Coaches, John Pagano and Mike Tice. Since the end of last season, Pagano has found work. He was hired as a Senior Defensive Assistant/Outside Linebackers coach for the Texans. But Tice has not found work. Now we may know why.
Tice told Minnesota radio station KFAN in Minneapolis that he thinks he’s ready to retire at the age of 59 adding that “Players no longer want to be coached.”
That’s an interesting statement considering the rumors at the end of this past season of Tice being a divisive force in the locker room. That terminology is rather vague in and of itself. And when you figure there were rampant rumors about the entire locker room being lost, a coach having issues with that is understandable.
The long time Offensive Line coach was credited with the construction and development of the Raiders’ outstanding offensive line. On the other hand, the key parts were either constructed with proven players signed to mega deals as free agents or players who arrived in Oakland prior to Tice arriving.
After the success they had in 2016 when they were arguably the top unit in the league, they struggled to acclimate to a change in scheme under new Offensive Coordinator Todd Downing. From the sounds of it, Tice caught some resistance from his line in making the changes. That too is understandable. Surely there’s a ‘if it aint broke, don’t fix it’ feeling among the previously well established group.
Whatever happened, it wore on Tice enough to cause him to consider calling it a career at 59. That’s no especially old, but it’s not young either. And if he’s having trouble finding work as an OL coach now, that could also give him cause to walk away.
The Raiders brought back their former OL coach and Head Coach Tom Cable to coach the Offensive Line under Jon Gruden.