Jon Gruden is known for being somewhat impulsive and moody. So, when he traded Gareon Conley to the Texans for a third round pick on the Monday after the Raiders secondary was ripped by the Packers, it seemed right with his MO. But according to Texans head coach Bill O’Brien Conley wasn’t an impulse buy for him.
“We’ve been talking to Oakland for a while about Gareon and we were finally able to come to an agreement on a deal,” Obrien said over conference call Tuesday. “It was good working with [General Manager] Mike [Mayock] and [Head Coach] Jon [Gruden] on the deal, and we studied Gareon in the draft. We’ve watched him while he’s been at Oakland and we just think that he is going to be a good fit for what we’re trying to do and we’re looking forward to working with him.”
Even with O’Brien’s long term interest, It’s certainly possible Gruden finally gave in and pulled the trigger because of how Conley played. But, let’s be clear, it wasn’t only Conley who crapped the bed against Aaron Rodgers and the Packers. It the whole secondary.
It was likely a couple of reasons Conley was the one let go. First of all, he probably had the most value. He’s young and just a couple seasons removed from being a first round pick. Second of all, he’s not a Gruden guy. Daryl Worley and Lamarcus Joyner are Gruden guys as is Erik Harris. Karl Joseph would seem to be another piece of trade bait, but he wouldn’t fetch as much as Conley, especially because he’s in the final year of his rookie deal.
O’Brien said they plan to play Conley right away, so it’s very possible he could face his former teammates this Sunday as the Raiders head to Houston to face the Texans. He downplayed the value of acquiring a player from the team he is about to face.
“I don’t think there is that much of an advantage because I think that Gareon is coming in here and is going to have to learn what we do. Kind of how our scheme works, how we meet, how we walk through, just kind of how we do things and there’s not going to be a lot of time for anything other than that,” O’Brien said. “I don’t think you can read too much into it. It’s pro football, that’s the way things work sometimes. Sometimes you make a trade and you end up playing that team the very next week. I mean, that’s just kind of how it works.”