Oakland Raiders To Pursue Jon Gruden, Offer Him Ownership Stake

Dean Simpson
December 31, 2017

ESPN's Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen reported the Raiders will pursue Gruden, who won't be headed to Tampa Bay after the Buccaneers committed to Dirk Koetter for at least on more season.

According to the ESPN report, the Raiders' offer to Gruden could include an ownership stake in the team.

Gruden, who coached the Raiders from 1998 through the 2001 season, last coached with the Tampa Bay Bucs in 2008.

For those wondering, no, the Raiders have not fired current head coach Jack Del Rio.

His name is brought up for coaching vacancies seemingly every year, but Gruden has to this point resisted offers and instead stayed with ESPN, often negotiating himself extensions and raises in the process. He made the playoffs, and won a game in said playoffs in each of his final two years at the helm. The Raiders have faltered this season, at 6-9 going into Sunday's season finale against the Chargers.

He now serves as the color commentator during the Monday Night Football telecast, a job he has insisted he is happy in.

Gruden coached the Raiders before being traded to the Buccaneers in 202. As successful as he has been as an ESPN analyst, providing color commentary for Monday Night Football and helping create Gruden's QB Camp annual specials, many around the league believed it was only a matter of time before he returned to coaching.

The report mentions potential complications, including the fact that a contract including an ownership stake would have to be approved by all 32 owners, and that Gruden and Del Rio share an agent.

Gruden did not directly comment on the report when he was quoted in the story.

So, it's natural to remain skeptical about Gruden leaving ESPN, but this Raiders rumor is certainly an interesting one.

"I don't want to sit here and speculate", Gruden told the network.

"The owner", one source said about Davis, "has an affinity for him". I cant say I havent taken any phone calls. Yeah, sometimes owners. Guys want to bounce ideas off me. "There is no news to report", Gruden said Saturday. "Im here to help people".

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