Over the past couple days, Adam Schefter has been the news breaker when it comes to the status of Khalil Mack. He revealed that Mack wouldn’t be reporting to camp on time, which is obvious being that he doesn’t have a new contract, then he said sources told him that Gruden and Mack haven’t spoken at all since Gruden took over as head coach. A report Gruden flatly denied on the first day of Raiders camp Friday while scoffing at the idea that it’s even a big deal.
“Is that dramatic? Really? Consider what’s drama. I’ve talked to Khalil,” Gruden said. “Those guys aren’t always 100% accurate, I’ve talked to Khalil, I talked to Mack when I got the job, I just haven’t had a lot of talk with him lately. Not much to talk about right now, sorry.”
Had the report been true, it would not be a small deal. A new head coach not speaking with his best player even once would be very strange, which is why it seems more likely Gruden is telling the truth when he says he spoke with Mack when he got the job.
Not having spoken to Mack lately is not strange at all. Gruden is the head coach, not the GM or the owner or a teammate.
“I’m coaching the team,” Gruden said of Mack’s situation. “I’m gonna run the quarterback meetings, I’m gonna go in there and try to install the plays and get ready for the next practice. Reggie [McKenzie] will be able to update you on his situation. He’s been in contact with his representation and hopefully we get him in here soon because he’s an exciting player. He’s one of the best in football.”
So, it looks like there’s really nothing to see here. Then again, if it would make any difference to Mack to speak with Gruden, he should get on that horn. Whatever it takes. Ask him if he wants to talk to anyone else and get them to call him too. Just get him locked in long term and in camp.