Since taking over ownership of the Raiders in 2011, Mark Davis has not been able to build a consistent winner. The team has just two winning seasons and no playoff wins. The team made the playoffs for just the second under his ownership last season but he decided to move on from interim head coach Rich Bisaccia in favor of Josh McDaniels.
Things have not gone well for McDaniels this season. The 10-7 playoff team he inherited added Davante Adams and Chandler Jones but is 2-7. He’s already lost as many games as the Raiders did all season last year. Many fans have been calling for McDaniels to get fired as early as the Week 2 loss to the Arizona Cardinals. The calls have only grown louder as the season has gone on. It seemed like a real possibility after the Raiders lost to the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday.
The Colts fired their head coach heading into the game and hired Jeff Saturday, who never coached in the NFL or college before. Despite that, the Raiders looked like the team that had a coach with no experience on Sunday. Davis didn’t fire McDaniels after the game and it’s clear he’ll likely ride with the coach for the rest of the season. In fact, the owner came out and offered support to McDaniels.
“As far as Josh goes, I have no issues,” Davis told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “I’m getting to know him a lot better. When you sign someone to a contract, don’t you expect him to fulfill the contract?”
That’s a major vote of confidence from Davis. He didn’t stop there. He also praised the coach and is a fan of the job he’s done so far.
“I like Josh. I think he’s doing a fantastic job. That’s why I hired him,” Davis said. “We did an exhaustive search and found the person we believe is going to bring the Raiders to greatness.”
Davis Has No Plans to Fire McDaniels
It’s hard to imagine the Raiders sinking any lower than the loss to the Colts. At this point, everybody expects the team to lose most of their remaining games. Davis understands why fans are so angry right now but stresses that it’s important to not be impulsive based on a nine-game sample size.
“Life isn’t static. It’s fluid. You want to win at the end of the year and be the one holding the trophy,” Davis said. “Obviously, we’re not there yet. I know it’s frustrating for the fan base. I feel for them. I’m a fan as well.”
It certainly doesn’t sound like Davis plans to fire McDaniels anytime soon based on his interview.
“Why wouldn’t I?” Davis said when asked if he believes McDaniels is the long-term option as head coach.
What Would It Take for Davis to Fire McDaniels?
Fans want McDaniels gone now but it doesn’t make a ton of sense to fire him at this moment. The Raiders don’t have an obvious replacement on the staff and Charles Woodson isn’t about to pull a Jeff Saturday. Las Vegas has already hit rock bottom so things can’t get much worse.
Once the season ends, it’s anybody’s guess what Davis might do. If the Raiders finished with a 2-15 or 3-14 record, Davis would have to strongly consider his options. Based on his comments, it sounds like McDaniels will at least get another year with the team. It’s not the answer fans want to hear but there’s no reason to believe that Davis is firing his head coach anytime soon.