Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid, left, talks with offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy during an NFL preseason football game against the San Francisco 49ers in Santa Clara, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)
- Eric Bieniemy and Brian Daboll are betting frontrunners for Raiders’ head coaching job
- Las Vegas has lost two straight and head coach Jon Gruden resigned after numerous offensive emails were revealed
- Find out who we think takes on the Raiders’ HC job below
If only the Las Vegas Raiders had to worry about a two-game losing skid.
The foundations of the franchise have been rocked, after head coach Jon Gruden’s ousting, following a slew of offensive emails that span the last decade.
The interim duties go to special teams coach Rich Bisaccia for the rest of the year, but there’s plenty of speculation on who will steer the Silver and Black ship next.
Offensive gurus Eric Bieniemy and Brian Daboll are the betting frontrunners.
Raiders New Head Coach Odds
Odds as of October 13 at DraftKings.
Oddsmakers have really spanned the football world for this list, which include no-chance’s like Jay Gruden, college royalty in Nick Saban and Dabo Swinney, as well NFL legend Peyton Manning and Raiders’ hall-of-famer Howie Long.
Eric Could Be Great
Bieniemy has been flying under the wing of Andy Reid in Kansas City since 2013, starting out as running backs coach before taking over as offensive coordinator in 2018.
Now in his fourth season, he’s at the helm of one of the premier offenses in the NFL, and is considered a lock to eventually be a head coach. Bieniemy has been in no rush — while some jobs have passed him by, he’s also turned down teams and stuck with KC, even after winning the title in 2020.
“And obviously, yes, I do want to be a head coach,” Chiefs OC Eric Bieniemy.
— Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) January 22, 2021
The Raiders feature some of the same elements he’s helped craft into a juggernaut with the Chiefs. Darren Waller has the same game-breaking and field bending abilities as Travis Kelce, while Henry Ruggs III is their equivalent to Tyreek Hill. Of course, Derek Carr is no Patrick Mahomes, but maybe he doesn’t need to be.
— Las Vegas Raiders (@Raiders) December 6, 2020
Bieniemy’s teams have had success in the past sans Mahomes, even under a game manager like Alex Smith.
This would be a nice get for the Raiders: weakening their division rivals, and strengthening their team as well.
Brian is Business
All the praise goes to Josh Allen, who is looking like an MVP candidate this year, but offensive coordinator Brian Daboll has helped build the car that their stud quarterback drives.
Their journey since 2018 has taken them to right now, where, in Year 4, the Bills are absolutely trashing their competition. They’ve won four straight, putting up 39 points a game, punctuated with a 38-20 whipping of the Chiefs in KC last time out.
Brian Daboll is an offensive genius and you’ll never convince me otherwise.
The #Bills OC has made Isaiah McKenzie a redzone threat.
Look how the Chiefs defense goes with McKenzie, leaving 3 RED jerseys to be blocked by 4 WHITE jerseys
— Dan Fetes (@danfetes) October 13, 2021
Again, having a dominating QB never hurts, but Allen was never projected to be this good, this fast.
Daboll could work his craft with Carr — and really, this season’s returns are not bad — or depending how this season unfolds, perhaps the Raiders seek their next pivot of the future. Like Bieniemy, Daboll can work either angle.
Others that should get a look include Byron Leftwich, who’s a certified Super Bowl-winning OC with the Buccaneers. Not too far removed from a playing career at pivot in the NFL, perhaps a players’ coach that can relate to his players might be the way to go.
Here’s Leftwich at the 2020 #NFLQBSummit talking about communication between QB and OC.
📅: 2021 QB Coaching Summit | June 22-23 pic.twitter.com/eOSnoOeabZ
— NFL Football Operations (@NFLFootballOps) June 14, 2021
Taking that further, Patriots’ linebackers coach Jerod Mayo just retired in 2015. Sure, the Bill Belichick coaching tree has seen some busts, but Mayo would present a tough-minded attitude and structured program in Vegas. He’ll likely have to win in the interview room, as he’s only been on a coaching staff since 2019.
Sam Darnold, former Jets QB, throws a TD to Robbie Anderson, former Jets WR….
Against the Jets.
The Jets are already in mid-season form. pic.twitter.com/h3Oee3CHU6
— Doug Rush (@TheDougRush) September 12, 2021
Two coaches that have made a name for themselves for their work this season include Panthers’ OC Joe Brady, who’s made Sam Darnold look every bit a third-overall pick. Remember when the Dallas Cowboys’ offense looked dull and outdated? That seems like years ago, but it’s only been recently, and helped along by Dallas OC Kellen Moore.
While he does have Dak Prescott back and healthy, he’s revived a run game that looked stalled out, making his QB look even more devastating. That ability to create balance would work wonders for the Raiders, who have heavy investments in their backfield.
Interim to Permanent
Does Bisaccia stand a chance to retain this role? He’s never been a head coach in the NFL, though he’s a football lifer, having coached a whopping 38 years at the pro and collegiate level.
It also says something that, on a Raiders’ staff that contains a slew of assistants with NFL head coaching experience in Tom Cable, Rod Marinelli and Gus Bradley, ownership went with Bisaccia.
— Raider Nation Boston (@RaiderNationBOS) October 12, 2021
If we’re strictly talking football, you could be in worse situations. This Raiders’ situation is anything but. Already, Carl Nassib — an openly gay player in the NFL — has been granted personal leave by the Raiders, affected by Gruden’s homophobic remarks. Bisaccia will also have to work to mend fences with a roster who may be thinking management has allowed both outward and implied racism.
Should he guide them to say, the AFC title game, that would be nothing short of a miracle. Taking the interim tag off for full time would be acceptable, but there’s a long way from point A to B.
What’s the Best Bet?
At this moment, the hottest coach in the market is Bieniemy. He’s been guided by the only coach in NFL history who’s won 100 games with two franchises.
There are plenty of candidates who can make a claim to this position, and situations can change over the course of a season — don’t think we didn’t see Sean Payton floating on the list.
For now, we’re keeping it pretty chalk.
The pick: Bieniemy (+500)