Las Vegas Raiders coach Jon Gruden said the process to hire a new defensive coordinator will start immediately and be a fast process.
There are already reports that Gruden has asked — or will ask — for permission to talk to candidates, including former Los Angeles Chargers defensive coordinator Gus Bradley and current Los Angeles Rams linebackers coach Joe Barry.
The #Raiders have now officially requested permission to interview #Chargers DC Gus Bradley for their vacant DC job, source said. A top candidate, along with #Falcons interim coach Raheem Morris (if he doesn’t get a head coaching job) and #Rams assistant Joe Barry.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 4, 2021
The @Raiders are expected to ask for permission to talk to @Rams assistant head coach/LB coach Joe Barry about their defensive coordinator job. Barry played a big role in the development of Cory Littleton from UDFA to Pro Bowl LB from 2017-2019.— Vincent Bonsignore (@VinnyBonsignore) January 4, 2021
Both Bradley and Barry worked on Gruden’s staff in Tampa Bay. Another former Gruden staff member, Raheem Morris, is also expected to be a candidate if he doesn’t get a head coaching job.
So for now, it seems like Gruden is leaning toward a candidate he is familiar with to replace Paul Guenther, who was fired three weeks ago. Gruden said defensive line coach and interim defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli is expected to stay on the staff. Marinelli was also part of the Tampa Bay staff.
Gruden said he plans to keep the Raiders as a 4-3 defense. He explained what he is looking for in a new defensive coordinator.
“I think No. 1, great communication,” Gruden said. “A guy that can develop players, a man that will utilize his assistant coaches and allow them to express themselves and get more out of their units and a guy that has a history of success, a guy that has a great day-to-day work ethic and knowledge of the offenses that he has stop.
Somebody that can really adapt to Lamar Jackson and the style of offense they play to the next week where you got to get ready for Pat Mahomes and then it’s on to Phillip Rivers. There’s a lot of different variable that you have to deal with and adapt to. A people person, great drive and a real desire to be a Raider. I think there is a lot of criteria, but there’s some for you.”