How the Raiders welcomed back Jon Gruden

Tyler Owen
January 13, 2018

The pathway to the stage felt like a red-carpet affair.

Gruden became seriously interested in the job this season as the Raiders underperformed. And it was only a matter of minutes before Gruden brought up that snowy day in Foxboro.

But if Tuesday was about a clean slate for everyone, nobody will be more impacted by the arrival of Gruden than Carr, and how he responds to the insanity of which his new coach refers will go a long way in determining how fast the Raiders are again winning more games than not. His last memory of coaching in Oakland was the Tuck Rule game, and it's one that was clearly on his mind during his introductory press conference.

Kerr, who signed a five-year, $25-million contract when he was hired by Golden State in 2014, could be up for a contract extension following the season.

"Technology's changed. Technology is incredible", Gruden said. This time around we are getting a wiser Gruden.

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After a video montage of his first tenure, Gruden told a room packed with reporters and former players how excited he was to have another opportunity. "Let's go, go, go, go, go!" he yelled in another. He hid in darkness for only a minute before the lights came on. I only live one time.

Davis broke out of his norm and showed some personality, saying this was a "big effin' deal".

Gruden climbed the stage, embraced Davis, then McKenzie. It took a while for the applause to die down and the cameras to stop flashing. "[I] love football", Gruden said during media availability Tuesday. "I used to get phone calls from Al Davis at 3 a.m". "I want to give them two of the best years of football I can possibly give them". He was 106-62 as head coach of the Chicago Bears from 1982 to 1992 and, after a four-year hiatus, 15-33 as head coach with the New Orleans Saints from 1997 to 1999. Owner Mark Davis has made big a move his father would surely have made, to inspire the local fanbase in Oakland for a couple more years and pave the way for increased hype when the team moves to Las Vegas.

Oakland Athletics Manager Bob Melvin was in attendance. I've got to hire a great coaching staff - that's been the No. 1 criteria that I've tried to bring every place that I've been as a head coach. "All of us just want to know, is there a no-trade clause in your deal?"

On Wednesday, Carl Steward of the Bay Area News Group passed along comments from Rice, who played one season under Gruden during the coach's first stint in Oakland, about the importance of buying into his approach in order to succeed. But I still want to be very detailed in the way we play offense, I still want to be very involved in how we move the football. That information, he said, should help him this time around.

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