Report: Mark Davis was in “protracted talks” to hire Jon Gruden in 2012


With the Raiders possibly looking for a new head coach and with Jon Gruden’s agent in mid-late-season form when it comes to creating the perception that multiple NFL and college teams want to hire Gruden to be a coach, it makes plenty of sense to combine the two story lines.

Especially since former Raiders quarterback Rich Gannon already has said regarding a Gruden return to the Raiders, “I don’t think it’s outside the realm of possibilities.”

Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reports that Raiders owner Mark Davis engaged last year in “protracted talks” to try to land Gruden in late 2012.

A report regarding talks between the Raiders and Gruden surfaced last December on the same day coach Dennis Allen’s father died, prompting an angry response from former P.R. chief Zak Gilbert:  “There are two people on this planet that have the ability to make talks happen between Jon Gruden and the Raiders, with regard to him allegedly taking over the football operations, and/or the position of head coach.  Each of those individuals, owner Mark Davis and general manager Reggie McKenzie, wanted me to communicate that this rumor has no validity whatsoever.  And for the record, I’m personally disgusted that Hub Arkush would spread such an untruth on the day our head coach, Dennis Allen, had to determine with his mom, his brother and sister, whether to take his dad off life support or wait and hope that he would regain consciousness.  Dennis didn’t have an opportunity to say goodbye to his dad, but he did have an opportunity to take a phone call regarding Hub’s story.”

Making the rumor/report/whatever a bit more intriguing this time around is the fact that former Raiders CEO Amy Trask currently works for CBS.  It’s possible, however, that she wasn’t privy last year to any interest in or discussions with Gruden’s agent last year.

For now, it’s obvious that Gruden’s agent is the one repeatedly discussing with the media Gruden’s interest in jobs that are vacant (like the University of Texas) and jobs that aren’t (like the Raiders and the Falcons).  Which should do little to ensure that Gruden or his agent will be getting a holiday card from Allen or current Atlanta coach Mike Smith.

The overriding goal seems to be keeping Gruden’s name at the top of the annual “A” list, and possibly to make prospective owners forget that, after Gruden was fired by the Buccaneers, former Tampa defensive end Simeon Rice publicly called Gruden a “scumbag” — and none of Gruden’s former players rushed to his defense.

14 responses to “Report: Mark Davis was in “protracted talks” to hire Jon Gruden in 2012

  1. Thank God it didn’t happen.

    Gruden is the last coach the Raiders should bring in, due to the rebuilding that’s going on.

  2. You have to wonder if coaches like Gruden and Cowher who have been out of the game for several years would be able to be successful after such a long layoff……

  3. Simeon Rice was a whiner too,so was Keyshawn and Sapp.Not exactly class acts.As far as Gruden goes why live in the past?

  4. What is the appeal of Jon Gruden? Teams and fans act like he’s Vince Lombardi. He won a Super Bowl with Tony Dungy’s team and then ran it into the ground. He’s never developed a good franchise quarterback.

  5. Those old Bucs players are just pissed that Dungy couldn’t get it done while it only took the new coach 1 year to get it done. Dungy needed Manning to make him look great the same way Shanahan needed Elway to make him look great.

  6. What is so special about Jon Gruden? Yeah he won a SB with Dungy’s team, but since then he has done squat. You would think this guy’s resume was on Bill Bellichick’s level.

  7. Well, Davis and the Raiders can do what they want and I’m sure they will. But firing Dennis Allen after two years, considering the complete train wreck of a team he’s had to contend with, makes little sense to me. In light of the cap purge they had to go through and the roster churning, expecting better than what they’ve done is ridiculous.

    All things considered, any coach, especially a young first timer, should be given 5 years to get the thing off the ground. The first two seasons were intentional, unavoidable dismantling, next year on the guy should have three years to build a team. Either that or Davis and McKenzie will have to admit they completely cobbed this first hire of a head coach.

  8. Funny how I keep reading Gruden won with Dungy’s team. Didn’t Gruden beat Gruden’s team in the Super Bowl? So if Gruden wasn’t traded he probably would have the Raiders their 5th Super Bowl title. I say5th because if not for the tuck rule he probably would have won the Raiders their 4th Super Bowl title the year before.

  9. Gruden wants his name in the books as he gets easy money. Just like that easy SB where he won with another man’s team. And didn’t win again.

  10. Gruden wouldn’t want to go back. The Raiders will be rebuilding, again, for at least the next 2-3 years. I’m sure John would rather coach a winner.

  11. Gruden would go back because this isn’t the same administration at the helm. All of pappy Davis staff have since been replaced because they were perceived as a threat to Baby Davis knowing first hand he was incompedent. Presently, the only reason he is not coach is because McKenzie feared for his job, knowing Gruden would eventually be GM also. Well it’s obvious that the two year experiment has failed and a majority of the blame rest with horrible decisions made by McKenzie, draft picks, trades, coaching staff etc…
    Gruden would come to the Raiders if allowed to be GM and coach. With McKenzie as GM, it wouldn’t work.
    Gruden would pick experienced coaches, NFL caliber talent and Baby Davis wouldn’t be perceived as an incompedent owner. Time for CHANGE!

  12. What ever it takes to get back to winning. From a business stand point Gruden is beloved in Raider nation and with open arms he would generate ticket sales, money, fans and a new hope for a championship. He and Al didn’t t always agree but he had a lot of respect for Al and the family. H e remembers that Al gave him his start when he was a no name. I think coaching is in his blood and he would love to come back and rebuild our Raiders into the franchise they once were now that Al is gone and he could have more say. The only reason I don’t think Mark brought him in last year was the money that Gruden and his staff would need? Now we have that money, full draft pics and “Chucky” coming home would turn this ugly mess around in a quick hurry.I don’t care who coaches, “Just Win, Baby” If Rm and DA heads half to roll to get it done then let off with their heads MATEY!!!!!!!!

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