Raiders hire Patriots OC Josh McDaniels as head coach, Dave Ziegler as general manager
The Las Vegas Raiders are hiring New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels as their new head coach, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Sunday. The two parties have agreed on the terms of a deal.
McDaniels emerged as the top candidate for the job before meeting the Raiders brass this weekend. Rapoport reported that McDaniels had a positive dinner with team president Dan Ventrelle on Friday night and interviewed owner Mark Davis on Saturday.
The longtime Patriots OC will be joined in Las Vegas by fellow former Patriot Dave Ziegler as the Raiders’ next general manager, as Rapoport and NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo and Tom Pelissero reported earlier on Sunday. The former Patriots director of player personnel is seen as an ideal front-office partner for McDaniels, according to Rapoport.
McDaniels has walked the Patriot Way for nearly two decades. He was involved in all six Super Bowl titles, serving as offensive coordinator from 2005-08 and 2012-21. Last season, he guided quarterback Mac Jones through an impressive rookie year as the Pats returned to the playoffs as their offense rebounded to sixth in points.
In Las Vegas, the 45-year-old McDaniels inherits another 2021 wildcard team that has persevered through tragedy and off-court turmoil. In the space of four weeks midway through the season, coach Jon Gruden resigned after The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times published articles detailing Gruden’s use of racist, homophobic and misogynistic terms in emails; former catcher Henry Ruggs III was released following his arrest and multiple felony charges related to his role in a traffic accident that resulted in the death of a young woman; and cornerback Damon Arnette was released following a series of off-field incidents, including a viral video in which Arnette brandished a gun and threatened to kill someone.
Special teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia was named interim coach in October and led the Raiders on an inspired run to Super Wild Card Weekend, where they lost at the last minute to the Cincinnati Bengals. Las Vegas finished the season with a 10-7 record (7-5 with Bisaccia) and made the playoffs for the first time in five seasons. The Raiders haven’t won a postseason game since reaching the Super Bowl in the 2002 campaign, going through nine permanent head coaches.
Following the Raiders’ recent loss by wildcard, Rapoport has announced that the future of franchise quarterback Derek Carr will likely be tied to the head coaching hire. The three-time Pro Bowler is coming off arguably the best season of his career, but he only has one year left on his contract and there’s no dead cap reached in 2022.
The Raiders are technically McDaniels’ third foray as a head coach, though he’s only worked in that capacity previously with the Denver Broncos. In 2018, he accepted the position with the Indianapolis Colts before retiring from the job the same day he was announced and joining the Pats.
In 2009, Denver made McDaniels its head coach at just 32 years old. His tenure lasted less than two seasons and stood at an 11-17 mark. He spent 2011 as the St. Louis Rams’ offensive coordinator before returning to New England the following year.