If you hang out in Vegas as late (and as often) as I have over the years, you’ll see some things.
And to keep it real, you’ll often come away saying to yourself “Only in Vegas!” before moving on with your evening.
This is a football thing, but it also feels like an Only in Vegas occurrence:
Raiders are expected to hire former Patriots’ OC Josh McDaniels as their head coach, per sources. Two sides still are finalizing the contract, but McDaniels is their man.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 30, 2022
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 30, 2022
The Las Vegas Raiders are hiring Josh McDaniels to be their next head coach. Of course they are hiring McDaniels. This feels like such a Raiders move. There is something about an impending cohabitation of seemingly unstable partners in Vegas that feels so right. It’s the Raiders, who are football’s collection of oddballs, outsiders, and outcasts. And it is McDaniels, a football bad boy in search of a new lease on life as a football head coach. Four years after leaving the Colts at the altar, McDaniels is ready to settle down. And in Vegas of all places. Funny how that works.
McDaniels’ hire — once it becomes officially official – has the potential to have a Bears-related trickle-down effect. There was a time in which McDaniels was on our radar as a potential Bears head coach candidate. However, McDaniels never emerged as an interviewee at any point. Instead, his landing in Las Vegas could impact Chicago’s football team in other ways. For instance, Brad Biggs (Tribune) tweets Sean Desai – who was the Bears’ defensive coordinator in 2021 – could be on the move and follow McDaniels to the Raiders. Desai did an admirable job in Chicago. Especially when considering what he was left to work with in terms of healthy and available bodies. But with a defensive-minded head coach taking over, it is more likely we’ll see a jettisoning of the old guard when it comes to that side of the ball.
A more prominent impact could come from a Raiders coach leaving Las Vegas. Rich Bisaccia is set to become a coaching free agent after being Vegas’ interim head coach after Jon Gruden’s resignation. Bisaccia was coaching special teams in Vegas before taking over for Gruden. And with his ties to new Bears head coach Matt Eberflus being what they are, it is easy to connect the dots to line up Chicago as a soft landing spot as a special teams coordinator with the Bears. In fact, that possibility came up almost immediately when the McDaniels-to-Vegas rumors began taking shape. Not to say Bisaccia going to the Bears is a lock. We know better than to assume that in this (or any) hiring cycle. But instead, to point out that established relationships with long-time coaches could be something a first-year coach like Eberflus leans on in his staff building.
Because of the potential reach this move has, we’ll keep eyes on the possible trickle-down effect it could have with the Bears. Not to mention the potential drama on the horizon knowing the Colts and Patriots are on the Raiders’ schedule in 2021.