Rich Gannon

Raiders Notes: Gannon, Fraley, Marynowitz

Rich Gannon will not be the next Raiders’ quarterbacks coach, as he explained to 95.7 The Game (Twitter link via Scott Bair of NBC Sports Bay Area). Gannon, now a commentator with CBS Sports, apparently had some level of interest in the position, but “came to his senses” on a flight to Oakland, realizing he couldn’t put in the required time commitment. Gannon, of course, has a long relationship with new Oakland head coach Jon Gruden, as he served as Gruden’s starting quarterback with the Raiders from 1999-2001. The 2002 MVP, Gannon lost to Gruden’s Buccaneers in that year’s Super Bowl. Without Gannon in tow, Oakland may simply choose not to hire a QBs coach, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link).

Here’s more from Oakland:

  • The Raiders are hiring an offensive line coach to replace Mike Tice, and the club has no shortage of candidates. Incumbent Cardinals offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin — who is also in the running for the Bengals OL job — has interviewed with Oakland. Meanwhile, former Eagles lineman Hank Fraley, former Dolphins coach Jim Turner, and longtime NFL stalwarts Hal Hunter and Frank Smith are also contenders for the position, reports Mike Garafolo of NFL.com (Twitter link).
  • Cowboys running backs Gary Brown is interviewing for the same role with the Raiders today, per Rapoport (Twitter link). Gruden had been expected to target Brown ever since he was linked to the Oakland job, but Dallas reportedly isn’t giving him up without a fight. Whether or not Brown decides to defect to the Bay Area could depend on the content of today’s meeting. Brown, who enjoyed a nine-year career as an NFL running back, first entered the coaching ranks with Cleveland in 2009.
  • Alabama defensive backs coach Derrick Ansley is interviewing to become the Raiders’ new secondary coach, according to Rapoport (Twitter link). Ansley has never coached at the NFL level, but he does offer vast collegiate experience at stops such as Kentucky and Tennessee. Recent reports have indicated Ansley will be Colorado State’s next defensive coordinator, but he could hypothetically pass up that opportunity in order to join the NFL.
  • The Raiders are speaking to Alabama associate athletic director for football Ed Marynowitz about a role in their personnel department, reports Michael Lombardi of the Ringer (Twitter link). Marynowitz previously worked under Chip Kelly in the Eagles’ front office, but was fired along with Kelly in 2015.

Raiders To Pursue Jon Gruden

Now that the Buccaneers are expected to retain Dirk Koetter as their head coach in 2018 (though Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk thinks that Tampa Bay could easily reverse course in that regard), the Raiders are upping the ante in their pursuit of Jon Gruden. Gruden, of course, previously served as head coach of Tampa Bay and Oakland, though his name has been more heavily connected to the Buccaneers in recent weeks.

Jon Gruden (vertical)

But ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that the Raiders are preparing to pursue Gruden with an offer so strong that it could include an ownership stake in the team. Schefter adds that Gruden, currently an ESPN analyst, will be tempted to accept the offer, though he would prefer to wait until the regular season concludes and Oakland formally makes a decision on current head coach Jack Del Rio.

There are complications to a potential reunion. For instance, if Raiders owner Mark Davis does indeed offer Gruden an ownership stake, the contract would need to be approved by all 32 owners and the league finance committee, and such approval could be difficult to attain, as ownership would not want to set a precedent. Furthermore, Del Rio and Gruden are represented by the same agent, Bob LaMonte.

Nonetheless, one has to figure that if the Raiders want Gruden, and Gruden wants them, the two sides will find a way to make it happen. After all, Gruden never wanted to leave the Raiders to begin with, and though Oakland has struggled this season, there are a lot of factors that make its head coaching job an enviable one. Plus, although Gruden has been frequently discussed as a highly-coveted head coaching candidate in past years, this is the first year that he has made calls around the league in an effort to piece together a potential staff.

Interestingly, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link) names current CBS analyst (and former Raiders QB) Rich Gannon as someone that Gruden has contacted as a potential quarterbacks coach.

Gruden declined to specifically comment on the Raiders’ position.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.