Despite a late-game surge, the Las Vegas Raiders lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers 23-18. Head coach Josh McDaniels made a controversial call late in the fourth quarter when he decided to kick a field while the team was down by eight points.
The Raiders were able to get the ball back but there were less than 15 seconds left in the game. Many people on X were baffled by McDaniels’ decision.
Many fans on analyst took to X to call for the coach to get fired over how he’s coached the team.
McDaniels’ record with the Raiders has dropped 7-13 and the team doesn’t appear to be trending in the right direction. It’s likely too early in the season for owner Mark Davis to seriously consider moving on from the coach but his future is coming more into question every week.
McDaniels didn’t make it through two full seasons when he was previously the head coach of the Denver Broncos and it’s looking like a real possibility that he might not make it through two full seasons with the Raiders.
Josh McDaniels Explains Field Goal Decision
If the Raiders defense could’ve stopped the Steelers on the drive after the field goal, then Josh McDaniels would’ve been able to justify the decision. However, Las Vegas has consistently had one of the worst defenses in the NFL for two decades.
It was a bold move to put the game in their hands. It ended up being the wrong choice and now McDaniels has a lot of explaining to do.
“You have two choices there,” McDaniels said in his September 24 media availability. “You can try to make it a five-point game where you have an opportunity to win it with a touchdown if you get the ball back or you try to go for it there … if you happen to convert, then you have to make the two-point conversion.”
It’s one thing to lose a close game, but it’s another thing to lose a close game due to a baffling coaching decision. Those are the types of things that make an owner start to question if they have the right coach. It’s hard to imagine McDaniels’ seat isn’t starting to warm up after an ugly start to the season.
Las Vegas Raiders Offense Is Struggling
It’s been three games into the season and the Raiders offense hasn’t scored more than 18 points. According to Spotrac, Las Vegas is spending the fifth-most money on their offense in the NFL this season. The Miami Dolphins just put up 70 points on a Broncos team the Raiders only scored 17 against and paying much less for their offense.
To make matters worse, Josh McDaniels is an offensive-minded coach who has longer been considered one of the top play callers in the league. He has yet to show that since joining the team. He has plenty of talent to work with but the Raiders offense often looks listless. Last season, McDaniels could use the excuse that Derek Carr wasn’t a great fit in his offense. He was able to hand-pick Jimmy Garoppolo as his new starting quarterback and he currently leads the NFL with six interceptions. The Raiders might be in for an overhaul if things don’t start getting better soon.