Oakland Raiders Abruptly Fire Coach
The Oakland Raiders abruptly fired a coach this week.
Jon Gruden is no stranger to making bold moves for the organization.
On Tuesday, he made one of the most surprising ones yet.
The team announced that Gruden had dismissed defensive line coach Brentson Buckner effective immediately.
Buckner, a widely respected figure around the league, had only served on season in the role.
In Buckner’s place Gruden will hire well-known NFL assistant Rob Marinelli.
Raiders coach Jon Gruden has fired respected defensive line coach Brenston Buckner and is expected to replace him with Rod Marinelli. Under Buckner, the Raiders improved from 13 sacks in 2018 to 32 this year, and from 30th against the run to 8th.
— Jim Trotter (@JimTrotter_NFL) January 14, 2020
Marinelli, 70, previously served as the defensive line coach and defensive coordinator of the Dallas Cowboys.
In some ways, the move should be viewed as a particularly surprising one. Although the Raiders enjoyed success with Buckner, Gruden shares a longer history with Marinelli.
Marinelli served as Gruden’s assistant head coach and defensive line coach with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 2002 to 2005. The two won a championship together in 2002. It remains to be seen if history will repeat itself this time around.
Following Mike McCarthy’s arrival in Dallas last week, it became clear that changes were going to made to that staff.
It is unclear whether Marinelli would have remained had this opportunity not come along.
This past season the Raiders finished 7-9 after going 4-12 one year prior.