Head coach and general manager hirings have been getting announced around the league all week long, but the Las Vegas Raiders still have an opening for both spots. A lot of news has been made about the Raiders’ search though, and the latest makes it seem like the jobs won’t be available for much longer.
Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network reported yesterday that Las Vegas, New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and pro personnel director Dave Ziegler are “all-in”.
“McDaniels informed the Raiders that he wouldn’t accept their interview request unless he was being offered the job, per sources,” Wilson reports. “And the Raiders told McDaniels that if and when he was offered the position, he needed to be prepared to accept. Sources emphasized that all parties are on the same page, including McDaniels, Ziegler, Raiders owner Mark Davis, and team president Dan Ventrelle.”
If that’s indeed how things went down, McDaniels essentially telling Davis “don’t even talk to me if you’re not going to hire me”, that’s a bold strategy by the former Denver Broncos head coach.
McDaniels certainly played a part in winning three Super Bowls with Bill Belichick and Tom Brady in New England, but his 11-17 record as the head coach in Denver is a black mark on his résumé. Also, there was the whole debacle with the Indianapolis Colts where he accepted the job and then backed out later, so that’s quite a strong-armed move for someone with that much baggage, in my opinion.
Granted, McDaniels redeemed himself this past season as the Patriots ranked sixth in scoring — 27.2 points per game — with rookie quarterback Mac Jones under center, and he’s reportedly garnered interest from other teams as well.
It’s widely been assumed that McDaniels and Ziegler will come in a head coach/general manager package deal. They were roommates in college and the former has brought the latter with him to both Denver and New England, and Ziegler has built up a strong reputation as a talent evaluator, according to Wilson.
One important distinction to make here is Wilson doesn’t explicitly state that this is a done deal, just that there seems to be a strong sense of unity from all parties involved. Who knows if they’ve discussed money yet, and that could complicate things as McDaniels is the highest-paid assistant in the NFL.
Regardless, it does seem like the Patriots combo is the leader in the clubhouse for both of the Raiders’ open positions at the moment.
In other Raiders’ Links:
- ESPN suggests Raiders-Packers QB swap: “If the Packers wanted to ship Rodgers to the AFC West, it wouldn’t be impossible to imagine them getting Carr back as a veteran option to take his place,” via Bill Barnwell.
- 2-Round mock draft: Our own Marcus Johnson sends a cornerback and defensive tackle to Las Vegas.
- Bears eyeing Bisaccia: Chicago is looking to bring him in as their special teams coach if he isn’t retained by the Silver and Black.
- S&BP Awards: we handed out MVP, DPOY, OPOY, ROY and CPOY for the Raiders the season