Now this one that might catch a little controversy, but players can only be as great as their system. Two things that come to mind when I think of 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan and Chiefs head coach Andy Reid are that they have great playbooks and make great calls.
Now I may catch some heat for saying this, but you do not reach a Super Bowl if you do not have great playcalling. In 2019, the Raiders playcalling was average to say the least. The defensive calls from Paul Guenther were very lackluster. The lack of blitzing and porous use of the secondary was evident this season, and although the Raiders did not have the best set of players on defense this season, they could do a lot more with a less predictable system.
To reach a Super Bowl its not just about defense but offense, and a lot of criticism has been thrown at the way quarterback Derek Carr runs the offense, some of the criticism is justified, but the playcalling of head coach Jon Gruden and offensive coordinator Greg Olson has been pretty lethargic.
It’s not very evident which is more to blame, but you always have to start from the top, and Gruden needs to expand his predictability and go for a less conservative set of playcalling. Many will say this is due to the lack of playmaking ability from Carr, but one thing is for sure, the playcalling seems rather vintage.
Gruden was a very successful head coach in the early 2000’s, but its a new era of play, and to reach a Super Bowl now you have to be more creative in playcalling style. Whether Carr is the quarterback or not, for this team to reach the Super Bowl next season, Jon Gruden must change his playcalling style.