The Josh McDaniels era in Las Vegas is off to a miserable start. But the Raiders aren’t planning to pull the plug on the former New England Patriots offensive coordinator.
McDaniels has received “assurances” from Raiders ownership that he will remain in his head-coaching role for the 2023 season, according to a report Monday from The Athletic’s Jeff Howe.
The Raiders, a 10-win playoff team under interim head coach Rich Bisaccia last season, currently sit at 2-7. That ghastly record includes three blown 17-point leads and a 25-20 home loss Sunday to a Colts team led by new head coach Jeff Saturday, who’d never coached a game above high school level when Indianapolis hired him last week.
In the wake of that humbling defeat, Raiders owner Mark Davis publicly backed McDaniels, saying he’s not considering canning his coach less than a year into the four-year contract the ex-Patriots assistant signed in January.
“As far as Josh goes, I have no issues,” Davis said, via the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “I’m getting to know him a lot better. When you sign someone to a contract, don’t you expect him to fulfill the contract? … I like Josh. I think he’s doing a fantastic job. That’s why I hired him. We did an exhaustive search and found the person we believe is going to bring the Raiders to greatness. … Life isn’t static. It’s fluid. You want to win at the end of the year and be the one holding the trophy. Obviously, we’re not there yet. I know it’s frustrating for the fan base. I feel for them. I’m a fan, as well.”
McDaniels joined the Raiders after spending the previous 10 seasons and 13 of the last 16 as New England’s OC. With the Patriots’ offense regressing under de facto replacement Matt Patricia, McDaniels’ early struggles prompted speculation over whether he, if fired, could swiftly land back in Foxboro, Mass.
But based on this new report, it’ll likely be a while before such a reunion becomes possible.
The Raiders will host the similarly disappointing Denver Broncos this Sunday while the Patriots welcome the New York Jets to Gillette Stadium.
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