Jon Gruden: We weren’t offering Khalil Mack anything close to the Bears’ offer

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Oakland traded Khalil Mack to Chicago on Saturday, and the Bears promptly made Mack the highest-paid non-quarterback in the NFL. That’s something the Raiders weren’t going to do.

Raiders head coach Jon Gruden said today that the Raiders did make Mack an offer, but it was not even in the same ballpark as the enormous deal he signed with the Bears.

“I don’t believe we were anywhere close to where the Bears were,” Gruden said. “He got a great contract from the Bears. A great contract. You know, $90 million guaranteed is an astronomical number, it’s phenomenal for the players, great for him obviously. But that was something we could not do.”

Gruden didn’t think it was realistic to make Mack the highest-paid defensive player in the NFL after paying quarterback Derek Carr so much.

“You’ve got to field a 53-man roster and there are some implications of having two players making that much,” Gruden said.

Gruden said getting the Bears’ 2019 and 2020 first-round draft picks could be huge for the Raiders in the future.

“Two first-round draft choices is a lot of compensation that we have to do something with,” Gruden said.

If Gruden doesn’t do something with those picks, his trade will be second-guessed forever.

102 responses to “Jon Gruden: We weren’t offering Khalil Mack anything close to the Bears’ offer

  1. The odds of either of his 1st round picks being as good as Mack are slim to slimmer.

    Let’s say one is as good as Mack: Then you have to pay him. If both are as good then what? Seems like a merry go round you can’t get off.

    The ‘window’ is when all the stars align. Or you have Belichick with a team friendly Brady (see wife: wealthy).

  2. He knows his team is trash. When you’re in the process of rebuilding, would you rather have Khalil Mack or two first round draft picks?

  3. But he’s right and it’s what I’ve been saying all this time. You cannot have two players on the same team making that kind of money and expect to be competitive. Chicago will regret this contract soon.

  4. You know…he’s not wrong. You can’t put that much into 2 players and field a competitive team around them. Mack will be missed by us Raider Faithful but in the end…the NFL is a business. We have a lot of rookies who are going to do fairly well for us, we have a DC who actually knows what he’s doing, and we have the foundation and draft picks to remain relevant in today’s NFL.

  5. Why did he give up a 2020 2nd rounder and 5th rounder in addition to Mack? That’s so crazy to me that they had to give up anything else in this trade when you had 6 teams in a bidding war.

  6. When you trade a great player, in any sport, the return is almost always not as good as the great player is.

  7. We know what you’re doing Gruden. Desparation statement here to win back your fanbase and locker room by trying to make the Bears look like THEY got fleeced….

    Not gonna work Chucky.

    The WHOLE world knows YOU got fleeced.

  8. They overpaid for Carr and now they are making it worse by not paying for Mack.
    This is why a franchise continues to struggle.

    Beyond that, Mack is one of the top five defensive players in the league.

    If the Raiders do very well in the draft, they might get two starters. More likely, they will get one quality starter and one bust. That’s just the reality of the draft.

    The Bears used to be cheap and they would do ridiculous stuff with their roster. In contrast, this sure looks like a smart move.

  9. Belichick and the Pats would never pay a defensive player that kind of money, so cut the crap.
    Mack wasn’t a team player so he’s gone…
    Great haul of picks and move on and hopefully upward.
    Cooper please take notice!

  10. You can’t blame Gruden. He wasn’t around when Carr received his contract and he’s not wrong, you can’t absorb two huge contracts. Getting two first is great if he can hit homeruns with them.

  11. I like to poke fun at the Raiders as much as the next guy. But this was a smart move by Gruden.

    Raiders have a future with this guy

  12. The Raiders got 2 first round draft picks and major cap space. How many teams in the league have a really good O-line, a good QB, a ton of future cap room and 4 first round picks in the next 2 years? The Raiders will be fine.

  13. Does anyone realize that no team has two players making over 22mil a year at the same time for a reason? I believe the Redskins had Norman and Cousins over 20 last year, and they were terrible. It’s impossible to pay the other 51 players and be competitive. The Seahawks and Colts are a perfect example of paying their QBs top market value and having to let other guys go, and that’s just ONE player taking up a big portion of the cap! This is why Bell isn’t being paid by the Steelers. This is why the Patriots move on from great players too. This isn’t the NBA where you can have 2 max contracts and still be viable.

  14. flviking.
    I love that logic.
    Of course, it would be a steal for the Bears if they turn the second round pick into an all pro OT.
    That’s about as likely as Oakland getting two high quality players.

  15. superfanentertainment says:
    September 2, 2018 at 8:30 pm
    We know what you’re doing Gruden. Desparation statement here to win back your fanbase and locker room by trying to make the Bears look like THEY got fleeced….

    Not gonna work Chucky.

    The WHOLE world knows YOU got fleeced.
    ——————————————————
    I guess you would rather have a defense comprised of 10 practice team players and Kalil Mack?

  16. taintedsaints2009 says:
    September 2, 2018 at 8:28 pm

    Why did he give up a 2020 2nd rounder and 5th rounder in addition to Mack? That’s so crazy to me that they had to give up anything else in this trade when you had 6 teams in a bidding war.
    ——————————————————————————————————————————–
    Because that was obviously the best deal any of those 6 teams offered.

    Personally I think the Bears have set their franchise back about a decade with this move, overpaying 1 guy, giving up draft capitol and not being close to winning anything anyway. This will go down as about on par with the Albert Haynesworth deal in Washington as idiotic moves.

  17. “That’s so crazy to me that they had to give up anything else in this trade when you had 6 teams in a bidding war.”

    Clearly, no one else was offering two firsts. They probably sweetened the return to guarantee a second first.

  18. “Mack wasn’t a team player so he’s gone”

    No, he wanted to get as much as he could, as an NFL career can end instantly. Can’t blame him at all for that. Would you take a pay cut at your job to be a team player?

  19. Gruden is wrong and his record will show that after 2 seasons. He is the one that is way overpaid. Mack is a great player. Some first round picks get cut after a few seasons, eg P. Lynch & B. Perriman, so getting two picks is pie in the sky compared to a great player that produces. The coach should stay in his lane and not the GM’s lane talking about about salary, unless he’s the GM too? As far as Belicheck goes, he messed up when he traded C. Jones. If he had him in the SB, he would have had a better pass rush. So Belicheck makes mistakes too

  20. In 2 years he will be complaining about the roster having a lack of talent. Therefor, he is doing great by being 8-24.
    Mack was a generational player. They don’t make them like that often. When you have one, you keep him. I guarantee you whomever they get will not be as good as Mack. Period.

  21. .
    @saints

    “Why did he give up a 2020 2nd rounder and 5th rounder in addition to Mack? That’s so crazy to me that they had to give up anything else in this trade when you had 6 teams in a bidding war.”
    ______

    A 6 team bidding war??? How many teams had the available cap space to acquire Mack? Never in a million years would the Bears have done the deal if they didn’t get some picks back. Chicago fans would have rioted.

    The Bears gave up first-round picks in 2019 and 2020, a third-round pick in 2020 and a sixth-round pick in 2019 to acquire Mack. Would you give up all these picks plus dole out a 141 million dollar contract for a 27 year old edge rusher?
    .

  22. Whoa. Whoa. Gruden will be second guessed IF they do nothing with those 2 picks, AND Mack performs up to his contract that he signed with the Bears. He needs to perform better than any other defensive play for the next few years. Players who hold out and seek maximum compensation often never live up to their contract, because to them it’s become more about themselves, their payday and they care nothing about the team.

  23. All this talk about Carr getting too much is ridiculous, IMO – and this is coming from someone that thinks Carr is overrated. It’s no longer about who’s the best, it’s about who is next. Like it or not, that’s today’s NFL.

    The bottom line is that if you have a starting-caliber QB, you have to pay that guy regardless of whether he’s top 5 or top 15. Unless you have another starting-caliber QB on your roster, you have no choice because if you don’t, another team will. The notion that they should offer their franchise QB less (and risk letting him walk) just so they could break the bank for a pass-rusher is absurd.

    Mack on his best day cannot match the impact that his starting QB will have on the game – good, bad or otherwise.

  24. Liberalsruineverything says:
    September 2, 2018 at 8:56 pm
    Why is Gruden even mentioning money? That’s not his job. He is the head coach. He can have input on decisions but should never talk money in front of a microphone. He will fail, guaranteed.

    ——————-

    The fact that he’s doing this tells me that McKenzie is being marginalized. It’s obviously Gruden’s team now.

  25. aldavisisthenfl says:
    September 2, 2018 at 8:31 pm
    Belichick and the Pats would never pay a defensive player that kind of money, so cut the crap.

    —————-
    BB never would have paid a QB who has never even won a single postseason game $25M per year

  26. superfanentertainment says:
    September 2, 2018 at 8:30 pm
    We know what you’re doing Gruden. Desparation statement here to win back your fanbase and locker room by trying to make the Bears look like THEY got fleeced….

    Not gonna work Chucky.

    The WHOLE world knows YOU got fleeced.

    Now are you speaking from experience as an actual person involved with an NFL team or from playing Madden Football in franchise mode ?

  27. Mack is a great player but I’ll take the two first round picks all day long. The Raiders picked up a 3rd round pick by moving down just 5 picks in round one this year. Think of all the trade down possibilities in now having 4 first round picks in the next two years. That is HUGE. It’s the biggest trade haul in NFL history for a defensive player. The media isn’t talking about that for some reason.

  28. Maybe if they weren’t sinking money into guys like Jordy Nelson and Bruce Irvin they could afford Mack. Good teams figure out how to make it work. Bad teams don’t.

  29. Good move by the Raiders. I wouldn’t award some dude sitting out wanting more money and giving him quarterback money. Teams like the Giants and the Bears are going to suck for years, especially the Giants giving Odell Buffoon Junior that kind of money and rewarding his bad behaviour.

  30. Does it annoy anyone else when people imply (or actually say) the reason Brady takes less money is because his wife makes so much?

    Although she does, it doesn’t make any sense as a reason. Brady has probably made over $200 million himself.

    What does it matter if his wife has $2, $2 million or $2 billion?

  31. Yet you were here in FA chasing Suh who you knew it would cost about $15 million to sign. Spin away. Gruden is a moron, and any fans who can’t see this by now are as dim as he is.

  32. Great trade, they are years from competing for the division must less conference. Rookie first round pick contracts (with the one year option) are a good deal for a team if they hit. Cant invest that much money on concussion or ACL if not for a franchise QB. Gruden knows that they are not competing right now!

  33. People seem to be forgetting that Cooper is going to be looking for a contract net year also. That’s going to be at least 16 mill. You couldn’t pay Mack, Cooper and Carr 65 million combined. Throw in the expensive o line and you’re talking nearly 100 million in 8 players. Not possible under the current cba.

  34. The Bears overpaid for a very good player, they simply have the money because they don’t have any good players on that team requiring a high salary. Do the math…. They overpaid and gave up two first round draft picks, 2 first rounders, lol. The Raiders will have 4, I repeat 4 first round draft picks the next two years. Even a 50/50 chance means 2 of those 4 will be as good or better than Khalil…. So keep telling yourselves this was a bad move by the Raiders, meanwhile common sense says otherwise..

  35. The fact that over half the league inquired about trading for Mack … knowing the kind of contract that Mack was looking for … speaks volumes about the way the Raiders approached this contract. Whether they could not scrap together the money (quite possible) or they simply decided that paying a bunch of washed up veterans (looking at you Derrick Johnson) rather than paying Mack, its clear that the Raiders aren’t interested in fielding a competitive team this year.

  36. If you watched his interview in its entirety, he made a lot of sense. They offered the man a decent contract, but his agent stood firm and found a better deal, a “great deal” to use Gruden’s words. If anyone got fleeced it was Chicago, they also gave up a third and seventh round pick in addition to the two firsts AND damn near $100 million for a guy who doesn’t play quarterback. What??

  37. So they got Mack but if my memory serves me correctly they also have Mitchell which doesn’t bode well for the monsters of the midway great D and scrub QB can only get you so far.

  38. He’s right. Mack’s really good but not worth that money. The raiders got a great deal from the bears. That’s going to be 2 top ten picks from a crappy bears team.

  39. The rams once had such a great draft haul. The last first round pick they had from those days was Aaron Donald with their own pick after Washington’s last traded pick. Could work out.

  40. The trade is not a move I like, but I do not hate it either. They have to pick well, but those could be some low picks. Gotta ask yourself, “what would the Patriots do?” as much as it pains me to type that. To me a chunk of the blame falls towards the union for not seeking some sort of “Larry Bird Rule” exemption to the salary cap. The NFL should want teams to stay together. It helps build rivalries.

  41. OaklandLosAngelesLasVegasRaiders says:
    September 2, 2018 at 8:39 pm
    Does anyone realize that no team has two players making over 22mil a year at the same time for a reason? I believe the Redskins had Norman and Cousins over 20 last year, and they were terrible.

    ***

    If by terrible you mean better than the Raiders, including dominating in a head-to-head, then, yeah, terrible. LMFAO

  42. No way does any defensive player deserve more money than a QB—-Raiders should trade their 2 number 1’s next year and move up to draft Ed Oliver. I would take him at 5 years for 45 million over Mack at 6 years for 141 million every day of the week.

  43. gscott104 says:
    September 2, 2018 at 8:35 pm
    “You know, $90 million guaranteed is an astronomical number…” says the guy guaranteed $100MM.

    ————–

    1) Coach’s pay doesn’t matter one iota to the salary cap.
    2) It’s heavily back loaded. For all practical purposes, it’s a 5yr/$25m contract and then a series of 1yr/$15m options from 2023-2027.

  44. Gruden won this deal. 2 1st rd picks for the next two years and they didn’t blow their cap space on one guy. Bears are basically in the position the raiders wouldve been in. Bad team, bad cap situation, but with no 1st round picks.

  45. Chances of either of those acquired 1st rounders panning out (let alone collectively making up for Mack) are slim to none given Gruden’s below average draft selection record.

    I’ll give Gruden this much – at least he owned up to the fact that he was the driving force behind this moronic trade. McKenzie has a less-than-stellar record with the Raiders but there was no way he would’ve wanted to trade away the best draft pick he ever made.

  46. That’s the economics of the game, besides Arden Key looks as good as a top 10 pick in the draft, he could make forget about Mack quickly

  47. That contract plus Carr’s would be 27% of the cap not counting any dead money from the guys Gruden dumped when he got there. It works “if” they hit on those picks.

  48. People are criticizing the Raiders for not paying Mack but does anyone believe this trade will set the Bears up for a playoff run. No. NFL is s team sport. The only player who can transform a team is the QB.

  49. –taintedsaints2009 says:
    Why did he give up a 2020 2nd rounder and 5th rounder in addition to Mack? That’s so crazy to me that they had to give up anything else in this trade when you had 6 teams in a bidding war.

    I am a Bears fan, and the truth is… they have stunk since Lovie was fired. The Raiders are probably considering the draft positions.

  50. If i was a raider fan it would hurt but outside looking in both teams got a lot in this trade. In all honesty why would you pay a player that when he was part of one of the worst defenses in the league. If you aren’t good enough to have that kind of impact on a team then i wouldn’t pay you that. They got a ton worth of picks and honestly they made the smartest hardest decision. Pretty sure bill b would of done the same.

  51. Hey, there is a price for everything. I like steak but there is a point at which I won’t pay for it. He exceeded their price point. It looks like a thorough roster cleanout for the Raiders. Gruden is reworking the roster to suit him, which is his right. He will retool the offense. Defense doesn’t win championships anymore. Great offense and okay defense wins titles.

  52. gscott104 says:
    September 2, 2018 at 8:35 pm
    “You know, $90 million guaranteed is an astronomical number…” says the guy guaranteed $100MM.
    *****************************************************************************
    The big difference is coaches salaries DO NOT count against the salary cap.

  53. The obvious response from Raiders fans: SO WHAT.

    The NFL is literally set up to be able to underpay players and keep them on the teams that drafted them.

    It’s called the franchise tag. This guy could’ve been around for at least 3 more years.

    This is Gruden not owning the decision.

    Gruden WANTED to trade him. That’s why he’s gone.

  54. Lol! The Raiders hate is real. But you know what? It’s actually fear. You are all afraid that the Raiders will be really good again! Enough talk. Let’s play ball!

  55. The league is definitely going to be more entertaining w/ Gruden in the coach’s seat. He’s awesome. I think he is dead right on this, as he was when he noted that the Raiders finished in the middle of the pack WITH Mack, so what’s the big deal?

  56. No tomatoes comment is off a tad. The 4th year is where Mack’s AGENT will be whispering in his ear YOU ARE UNDER PAID, we need more stay away from camp !!!

  57. Everyone wants to be an armchair GM. Lol. Show me a teams or even one , because honestly I can’t think of one, that is paying multiple players (2+) over $20 mil/yr that has a winning record. We want to win. Mack wanted to be the highest defender paid more than wanting to be a Raider. That’s unfortunate, I’m a huge Mack fan.

    Now someone can begin the argument that they ( Raiders) are giving $20+ mil/yr to the wrong player. I would concur. Just remember, Gruden had no part with that. So it’s laughable to pin this on Gruden. His hands were tied.

    Just saying.

  58. gscott104 says:
    September 2, 2018 at 8:35 pm

    “You know, $90 million guaranteed is an astronomical number…” says the guy guaranteed $100MM.
    —————————————————————————————————————————
    Can someone explain to gscott104 that there is a salary cap for players, but not coaches?

  59. No one is worth that much. Especially someone that plays a game for a job.

    Apparently he is, since, you know, someone paid him that much. It may offend your delicate sensibilities, but I suppose that’s why you aren’t in charge of constructing a football team.

  60. Mack on his best day cannot match the impact that his starting QB will have on the game – good, bad or otherwise.

    You say a pass rusher can never equal the value of a starting QB? The guy who hurries and sacks that QB, disrupting the timing and efficiency of an offense, doesn’t have that value? If the QB is one side of the “big value” coin, the other, equal side is the guy who takes away that value, i.e. when he is dragging that QB to the ground.

  61. I didn’t think Gruden would be this quick to running the franchise into the ground – but he’s proving otherwise.

  62. therealraider says:
    September 2, 2018 at 8:38 pm
    The Raiders got 2 first round draft picks and major cap space. How many teams in the league have a really good O-line, a good QB, a ton of future cap room and 4 first round picks in the next 2 years? The Raiders will be fine.

    ======================================================================

    You’re not wrong. Raiders have one of the Top 10 lines in the NFL. That said, they were worse in 2017 than 2016 by far and getting up there. As you said though, have the picks now. Unfortunately, they won’t be bad enough to get high picks and neither will the Bears.

    The argument that you can’t pay both is laughable. Eagles did fine last year. They just cheap out on cornerbacks and running backs BIG TIME. All they won was a Super Bowl. Nothing major or anything.

  63. Even a 50/50 chance means 2 of those 4 will be as good or better than Khalil…. So keep telling yourselves this was a bad move by the Raiders, meanwhile common sense says otherwise..
    **************************************

    This is exactly why I come to these message boards…do you honestly believe that ANY team will get 2 generational type players like Mack in 4 picks?

    Here’s there last 11 years of 1st rd picks, stop me when you see a HoF:
    2018 Kolton Miller
    2017 Gareon Conley
    2016 Karl Joseph
    2015 Amari Cooper
    2014 Khalil Mack
    2013 DJ Hayden
    2012 none
    2011 none
    2010 Rolando McClain
    2009 Darius Heyward-Bey
    2008 Darren McFadden
    2007 Jamarcus Russell

    So, in this group of 1st rd picks, can you pick out 2 of the 4 that would be considered better than Mack? Having draft capital is very important but assuming that 1/2 of the picks are going to be as good as Mack is downright silly.

    Oh, and TBH, I actually think the Raiders did the right thing in trading Mack for this haul based on their cap situation and the fact that they have the oldest roster in the NFL.

  64. @grumpysal

    We may have the oldest roster in the NFL but under that veteran leadership (most have played in Paul Guenther‘s system), is a lot of youth that are capable of eating up some good minutes every week. I’ll take those draft picks from Chicago any day to keep loading up on some good talent. Sure Reggie’s track record isn’t the greatest )it’s almost horrible), but what other GM/Coach doesn’t wiff on a few picks?

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