And it wouldn’t be a coaching search if there wasn’t an outcry for the return of Jon Gruden from Raider Nation… again.
The Raiders have fired seven head coaches since Gruden was traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Raider Nation has always been quick to bring up Chucky’s name when the new coaching search begins.
To Raiders fans, he’s more than just a head coach - he’s a symbol of when they were last good; he’s a bright offensive mind; he’s a big name; he’s hope.
The Raiders haven’t had a winning season since they got blown out in the Super Bowl against Gruden and his Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2003, losing 48-21.
Gruden hasn’t coached in the NFL since he was fired by the Bucs in 2009 after seven seasons at the helm of the Tampa Bay team. He started the season 9-3 and then lost four straight games, including a loss to JaMarcus Russell and the Raiders in the final game of the season.
The first problem with acquiring Gruden as head coach for the Raiders again is the offer that he would demand… and it would be large. Gruden seems rather comfortable with his situation on Monday Night Football which means Mark Davis would have to make a large offer to Gruden, and quite possibly give him a large amount of control over the team. This would not work with current general manager, Reggie McKenzie. And to some, that would be worth it.
Gruden had a strong four years in Oakland, going 40-28 before being traded by Al Davis. But it is also important to remember that he surrounded himself with bright football minds that also went on to have strong coaching careers.
Gruden’s tenure in Tampa Bay was a roller coaster. He led them to the Super Bowl victory after inheriting Tony Dungy’s team. But after that, his team made the playoffs just twice more in the next six years. Overall, he would went 57-55 in the regular season as the head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The Raiders would likely have to give Gruden the keys to the team, and is that worth it? Not to mention, nobody but Chucky really knows if he is interested in coaching again. He has already addressed the idea this week, saying on ESPN: "I'm not thinking about coaching. I'm thinking about heading to Washington, watching the world champions and my brother coach.”
If there is one thing that we do know, it’s that Gruden does like Raiders rookie quarterback Derek Carr (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJxRF8aXaMc).
We also know that the speculation will continue throughout the rest of the season, and even through the offseason until Mr. Davis announces his new head coach.
Only time will tell, Raider Nation. Only time will tell.