Raiders: 3 reasons why Las Vegas will win the AFC West in 2022
The New Regime
The biggest news of this offseason may be the big names that are now members of the Raiders franchise. However, none of this could have been done without the newly formed ‘power’ duo of head coach Josh McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler.
It is entirely too early to call this tag-team a success. Nonetheless, their rapport is one of longevity and trust that dates all the way back to when they were college teammates. The two have worked alongside each other within the New England Patriots franchise since 2013, with the two also on the same staff in 2010 with the Denver Broncos.
What Ziegler has done with this franchise in his short amount of time in charge makes the previous general manager in Mike Mayock look like child’s play. We may never truly know the amount of say Mayock had in the shaping of his time with the franchise (this due to the role of former head coach Jon Gruden), but either way, this offseason alone (which is also not finished) has seen the Raiders not just add solid, depth pieces – but superstar All-Pro talents.
Ziegler has a knack for pro scouting, and with the Raiders trading off their first and second-round picks for star wide receiver Davante Adams, shows that he values winning now and not a ‘classic’ rebuild, which this franchise is becoming famous for.
Adding top-tier talent shows that Ziegler believes this franchise can capitalize off of their successful 2021 campaign which culminated in the Raiders’ first playoff appearance since 2016, even if it did end in an early exit. To build off of this success was key, and not tear it down.
McDaniels in his one stint as a head coach was one that perhaps should be taken with a grain of salt. McDaniels was only 33-years-old when hired on to coach the Denver Broncos in 2009, a role in which he was riddled with controversy and failure. By 2010, he was already out as the Broncos head coach.
The soon-to-be 46-year-old coach admitted that he was not only too young to take on the role but that “he did not understand people.” With more patience and years under his belt running the Patriots offense, McDaniels seems to have learned more than ever under Patriots head coach Bill Belichick.
McDaniels has become a more balanced leader, with a successful offensive mind that has led to three Super Bowl victories for the Patriots.
The new head coach sold Raiders owner Mark Davis on his ability to fix the Raiders’ longtime red zone woes, as well as being able to successfully manufacture the best out of incumbent quarterback Derek Carr.
Only time will tell if these two will truly turn around the franchise’s fortunes. But after looking at what has occurred so far, they are surely adding a reason for this franchise to finally have a chance at dethroning the Kansas City Chiefs.