As a disappointing season comes to a close, the Raiders are reportedly preparing to offer their head coaching job to ESPN Monday Night Football analyst Jon Gruden, who coached the franchise from 1998-2001 before spending the next seven seasons as head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
That connection alone mandates the application of skepticism to any aspect of the report that seems self-serving to Gruden, including the eye-rolling notion that he prefers to wait to make a decision until after the regular season ends and the Raiders decide whether to keep coach Jack Del Rio.
The Raiders do now have a coach who received a contract extension last season. The offer, according to Mortensen, could include ownership stake and a backloaded contract that would allow Gruden to make the bulk of his money when the team moves to Las Vegas in order to avoid state tax. His interest in rejoining the Raiders could be for two reasons. Del Rio is a defensive-minded head coach. "I can't say I haven't taken any phone calls".
Here's a bit more on why Gruden might be tempted to accept this position. I take a lot from coaches, some others, yeah, sometimes owners.
Two, Raiders owner Mark Davis could be willing to give Gruden at stake in the team's ownership.
An ownership source said owners might not be so quick to approve the deal, because they wouldn't want to establish a precedent. After ranking top 10 offensively in points and yards last season, they are 23rd and 19th, respectively, this year. "Im here to help people".
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Under Del Rio, the Raiders went 7-9, 12-4 and then slumped to 6-10.
Vea, in the team's worst-kept secret, confirmed to The Seattle Times that he is planning to hire an agent in the coming days and declare for the National Football League draft.
As he has done previously, Gruden has started to assemble a possible staff, calling assistant coaches around the NFL.
Though he doesn't have coaching experience, it's hard to overlook the personal connection he has with Gruden. Each QB was scrapped in the offseason, and Gruden turned a 34-year-old journeyman signal caller, Rich Gannon, into a franchise quarterback by 2000, but not until he lost eight games with Gannon their first year together in 1999.
Gannon never has coached; he went straight to broadcasting upon his retirement.