• by:Phil Cantor/@osgphil

Why Are The Raiders The Latest Team Fascinated With Hiring Jon Gruden?


I don't understand the fascination football teams have with trying to hire former Coach and current ESPN Football analyst Jon Gruden.

I'm waiting for someone to explain what makes him such an attractive coaching candidate that his name dominates both he College and NFL Coaching Carousel every December.

Yeah, great, he's won 100 games as an NFL Head Coach and Lost 85, he took the Oakland Raiders to the playoffs twice (2000 and 2001).

After the 2001 loss in the AFC Divisional Playoff game--the Raiders thought so highly of Gruden that they traded him to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Yes---they traded their coach for 4 draft picks and cash.

Gruden would take over Tony Dungy's Buccaneers and get them in 2002 to their only Super Bowl appearance in team history and they actually WON the Super Bowl.

The Bucs never came close again. Gruden got them into the playoffs two more times before being fired after the 2008 season.

He's NOT been on a sideline since.

I'm still waiting for someone to explain why seemingly every off-seasons since then he was rumored to be taking over the Head Coaching job at the University of Tennessee. He began as a Grad Assistant there in 1986 but has no other direct tie. We've talked about the lunacy here ad naseum as Gruden has NEVER Coached--or recruited or anything else of note in College Football.

Just last week ESPN and other sports outlets were "Sure" the Buccaneers were preparing to offer Gruden their job and jettison Head Coach Dirk Koetter. All the way until mid week when the Bucs announced Koetter would return for his third season.

There have been reports and rumors Gruden has been in contact with potential Assistant Coaches as we approach January which prompted the "Latest" "Grumor"....

ESPN reports NOW....The Oakland Raiders are pursuing the ESPN analyst. The same Raiders who traded Gruden some 15-years ago.

Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen say Raiders owner and creepy looking dude Mark Davis wants Gruden so badly--he's willing to offer part ownership in the team. Despite the "New" Las Vegas stadium the Raiders will soon play in funded mostly on the backs of Nevada taxpayers--Davis has been strapped for cash for a long, long time.

However---The Raiders have a Head Coach, Jack Del Rio. Del Rio signed a somewhat lucrative contract extension after a highly successful 2016 but the Silver and Black have largely floundered in 2017. And---with an "Ownership" stake written into the contract, it means all 32 NFL Owners will have to sign off on the deal.

Oh, did we mention Del Rio and Gruden have the same agent? Awkward.......

I guess the prevailing thought is Gruden would hire assistant coaches with experience to help him on the sidelines. But I just don't get why he's the "Hot Commodity" he seems to be portrayed as.

Is Jon Gruden really that much better a head coach then any number of well qualified assistants? Heck, I'm not sure he's better qualified than Jack Del Rio.

But I'll grant you this---Gruden would likely be a better Head Coach than Ben McAdoo was for the New York Giants or Hue Jackson currently is for the Browns. For reasons unknown the Giants are actually strongly considering Philadelphia Eagles Defensive Coordinator and former Detroit Lions Head Coach Jim Schwartz to take over their team.

Schwartz has a career record of 29-51 with the Lions...

So yeah---maybe I just explained to myself why Jon Gruden may not be such a bad idea as an NFL Coach after all.

Go figure....

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