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Antonio Pierce hired: What’s next?

GM, coaching staff hires on tap now

2023 Mountain West Championship - Boise State v UNLV
Antonio Pierce
Photo by Ian Maule/Getty Images

OK, the biggest January decision has been made by the Las Vegas Raiders as they have promoted interim head coach Antonio Pierce to the full-time coach as expected. Now, let’s look at what’s next on tap for the new coach and team:

  • The Raiders need to hire a general manager. They interviewed six candidates. It had been expected that interim general manager Champ Kelly, who has been in lock step with Pierce since they took over on Halloween night, would be promoted as well.

But there is intrigue. The Raiders started their offseason by conducting the general manager search and it was expected owner Mark Davis would hire the general manager first.

Yet, Davis hired Pierce first. There was a report after the Pierce hiring that Kelly, who interviewed twice in the past week with the Raiders, was meeting with the team. It has been reported that Colts assistant general manager Ed Dobbs may be a finalist with Kelly and it has been reported he and Pierce have the same agent. So, there is a chance Dobbs gets the job.

  • It is expected most of the offensive coaching staff will be replaced. Offensive line coach Carmen Bricillo already left for the New York Giants and NFL Media reported that interim offensive coordinator Bo Hardegree won’t return. Pierce’s most important hire will be the offensive coordinator position for two reasons: Every defensive-minded coach needs a strong offensive lead coach and the Raiders’ offense struggled with consistency for much of last season. It’s ben reported that former Arizona head coach Kliff Kingsbury will be targeted by Pierce. yet, Kingsbury is interviewing for the same job with the Chicago Bears. there will be other candidates surely. Expect most of the defensive staff to return to Las Vegas, starting with defensive coordinator Patrick Graham if he doesn’t get a head-coaching job. He interviewed with both the Los Angeles Chargers and Seattle Seahawks,
  • Pierce will have some mentors with him. NFL Media reported that his Super Bowl-winning coach with the New York Giants, Tom Coughlin, will help him in the staff building process and Marvin Lewis, who he worked with at Arizona State, is expected to have a role on the 2024 staff.

Both Coughlin and Lewis consulted with Pierce when he was the interim coach and he is sticking with his mentors.