It sounds like Kliff Kingsbury won’t be heading to Las Vegas after all. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Kingsbury has withdrawn himself from consideration for the Raiders offensive coordinator job. It was reported earlier this week that the Raiders were set to hire the former Cardinals head coach for the role.
Per Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the agreement between the two sides was believed to be all but done. Peter Schrager of Fox Sports reports that contract negotiations became “undone” over the past 24 hours, and Kingsbury informed multiple members of the organization this morning that he wouldn’t be joining the coaching staff.
Following a one-year stint at USC, Kingsbury seemed prime for a return to the NFL. Besides the interest from the Raiders, the coach also interviewed for the Bears and Eagles offensive coordinator vacancies. While both of those franchises decided to go in different directions, it was still clear that Kingsbury was back on the coordinator radar.
The former NFL quarterback was once considered one of the brightest offensive coaching minds in the sport. That offensive acumen helped him earn the Cardinals head coaching job back in 2019. The team took steps forward in each of Kingsbury’s first three years at the helm, including a 2021 campaign where the Cardinals won 11 games. However, the Cardinals dropped to 4-13 in 2022, and Kingsbury was let go.
The coach seemed to lose a bit of his shine last offseason, leading to him taking a gig as senior offensive analyst/quarterbacks coach at USC. It wasn’t the most taxing job; after all, Kingsbury was tasked with guiding former Heisman Trophy winner and top quarterback prospect Caleb Williams. The signal-caller didn’t do anything to hurt his draft stock this past season, with Williams finishing the campaign tossing 30 touchdowns vs. five interceptions.
Former Raiders offensive coordinator Mick Lombardi was fired back in October, and Antonio Pierce has clearly put an emphasis on experience as he looks for his next offensive leader. We heard recently that the organization was eyeing Hue Jackson for a role on the staff, and the team also reportedly gave a long look at Chip Kelly for their offensive coordinator vacancy. Kingsbury was expected to lead this group, but the Raiders will apparently have to pivot in a different direction.
While the Raiders cast a wide net to fill their OC vacancy, many of their candidates have already taken jobs elsewhere. Besides Kelly, the Raiders could still turn to former Bears OC Luke Getsy, Buccaneers QBs coach Thad Lewis, or Steelers quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan.
As for Kingsbury, it will be interesting to see where he lands next. Jonathan Jones of CBS Sports points out that Kingsbury had been discussed as a potential OC option for the Commanders. With Dan Quinn now in place, that might be an idea that Washington circles back to.