On Friday night, the Las Vegas Raiders made it official, naming interim head coach Antonio Pierce as their guy to lead the franchise going forward. Making Pierce the full-time head coach was the right move for Mark Davis, who passed up on another interim coach, Rich Bisaccia in favor of Josh McDaniels after the 2021 NFL season.
That year, Bisaccia helped the Raiders navigate through a roller coaster season on and off the field, eventually guiding them to a playoff spot. Las Vegas had to win their final four games and get some help that season, and though they would lose to the Cincinnati Bengals in the Wild Card round, many in Raider Nation wanted him back.
But, Davis decided to go for the big-name hire, hoping McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler would bring their winning ways from their New England days with them. Instead, it was a nightmare of a hire, culminating in Davis firing both men on Halloween after a 3-5 start to the 2023 NFL season.
In his place, Pierce was given a golden opportunity, and took a down Raiders team to the brink of the playoffs. He coached with passion, and as a lifelong Raiders fan, knew that the opportunity presented to him was a special one, and certainly cashed in.
Now, Pierce will be tasked with making the Raiders a perennial winner in the AFC, and now that it is official, here are the people who benefit the most from his hiring.