For the Las Vegas Raiders, the 2023 NFL season was supposed to be one where the team took a giant leap forward. It was Year 2 under head coach Josh McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler, and with so many new faces on the roster, the Raiders were hoping to finally turn into a perennial playoff contender in the AFC.
However, the Raiders played inconsistent football all season long, and in the end, found themselves on the outside looking in at the playoffs. The 2024 offseason will be a huge one for the franchise, as many more changes are coming, but here, we look back at why the Raiders fell short of being one of the final seven teams standing in the conference this season.
3 reasons the Raiders ultimately fell short of the postseason this year
The Josh McDaniels Experiment
Josh McDaniels arrived in Las Vegas with visions of turning the Raiders into Patriots-West, and as it turns out, that is hard to do if you do not have Tom Brady at quarterback. McDaniels's decisions in player personnel, as well his decisions during games were head-scratching at nearly every turn, and in the end, he was fired on Halloween night.
By the time Mark Davis finally realized his mistake, firing both McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler, the season was nearly lost. The Raiders were sitting at 3-5 at that point, and would have needed a miracle to actually come all the way back and clinch a playoff berth.
Antonio Pierce did a great job rallying the troops, finishing out the year at 5-4 as the interim head coach, but in the end, the Raiders could not pull off the miraculous run to the playoffs. Hopefully, Davis has learned his lesson when it comes to bringing in head coaches who just cannot get the job done at this level.