Oakland Raiders Coaching Hot Board

It's time to break down the candidates for the Raiders head coaching job.

Tony Sparano | Previous: Raiders Interim Head Coach

Tony Sparano

Quick Hitter: Interim head coach Tony Sparano made a case for the permanent job, both in the season and the offseason. Though he went just 3-9 on the season, the players played hard for him all season and he received glowing endorsements from the players on locker cleanout day Monday. Sparano was also confident in his postseason press conference, stating that it’s his job until he hears otherwise and that all he wants is to be the Raiders head coach, “very, very badly.” Owner Mark Davis appears to like him quite a bit, so it will be interesting to see how his role plays out in the search. He also has the idea of “continuity” playing on his side, something the Raiders haven’t had for quite some time.

Rex Ryan | Previous: NY Jets Head Coach

Rex Ryan

Quick Hitter: Rex Ryan is an interesting name that comes up after he became an early victim of Black Monday, being fired along with his previous general manager John Idzik. Ryan is undoubtedly a great defensive mind, but his lack of offensive experience has proven to be a problem. Players seem to love playing for him, for the most part, but he needs some strong offensive minds around him. It’s also important to note that he has said he doesn’t want a defensive coordinator position next year.

Todd Bowles | Previous: AZ Cardinals Defensive Coordinator

Todd Bowles

Quick Hitter: Todd Bowles is one of the top assistant coaches available for a head coaching vacancy after he has helped form the Cardinals defense into one of the best in the league. They were ranked 7th in the NFL in 2013, and were 4th this season in points allowed. While he has never been a head coach in the league, he appears to be a young coach viable for the position.

Jack Del Rio | Previous: Broncos Defensive Coordinator

Jack Del Rio

Quick Hitter: Jack Del Rio is an obvious candidate for the job given his Bay Area ties, having been born in Castro Valley and went to Haywerd High School. On top of that, owner Mark Davis sought him out in the week 17 matchup to talk to him and say hi. Del Rio is another solid defensive mind but also has head coaching experience, having been the head coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars from 2003-211, finishing 68-71. Del Rio comes from the Mike Ditka and John Fox coaching trees.

Pat Shurmur | Previous: Eagles Offensive Coordinator

Pat Shurmur

Quick Hitter: Reports surfaced Tuesday morning that the Raiders will interview Philadelphia offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur for their head coaching position. Shurmur has previous head coaching experience, coaching the Browns for two years and finishing an atrocious 9-23. Before the Browns debacle, he was once considered to be one of the best assistant coaches rising the NFL coaching ladder. General manager Reggie McKenzie also worked with his uncle Fritz in Green Bay, so there’s familiarity there.

Eric Mangini | Previous: SF 49er’s Tight End Coach

Eric Mangini

Quick Hitter: Another previous Browns head coach, Eric Mangini is also reported to be interviewing for the Raiders head coaching job. Mangini went 10-22 in his two seasons with the Browns (2009-2010) and 23-26 in three season with the NY Jets (2006-2008). Before he became the Jets head coach, Mangini garnered respect in the league as a defensive assistant with the New England Patriots when they won three Super Bowls in four years. Already living in the Bay Area as a tight end coach across the Bay for the San Francisco 49er’s, Mangini definitely makes sense as the Raiders head coach.

Scott Linehan | Previous: Dallas Cowboys Playcaller

Scott Linehan

Quick Hitter: Scott Linehan joined the Dallas Cowboys last offseason and helped transform the Cowboys offense into one of the most prolific in the league, with record-setting performances from Tony Romo, Dez Bryant and DeMarco Murray. Linehan also has head coaching experience, going 11-25 as the head coach of the St. Louis Rams. The Raiders have reportedly asked for permission to speak with him, and may be able to as quickly as Sunday. He is only on a one-year contract, making him free to sign anywhere after the Cowboys season ends anyways.

Pep Hamilston | Previous: Indianapolis Colts Offensive Coordinator

Pep Hamilton

Quick Hitter: Hamilton has Bay Area ties, spending time as the offensive coordinator at Stanford with Andrew Luck in 2010-2012, as well as serving as the San Francisco 49er’s quarterbacks coach in 2006. Hamilton has drawn interest from other teams around the league, but the Raiders hope that they may be able to use their location to lure in the former Bay Area resident.

Mike Shanahan | Previous: Washington Redskins HC (2013)

Mike Shanahan

Quick Hitter: Mike Shanahan has popped up as a name that the Raiders have interviewed. It's interesting since he was previously the Raiders head coach and since his last relationship with the Raiders ended ugly with a power struggle between him and then-owner Al Davis. Shanahan has since won three Super Bowls, all with the Denver Broncos, and compiled a head coaching record of 177-143-0. Shanahan has drawn interest from other teams as well, including the Bears, Bills and 49er's.


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