Jon Gruden likely to coach Raiders or Falcons if he returns, per report


The former coach could conceivably be talked back to take up the job once more for the right situation this offseason.

Former NFL head coach Jon Gruden is likely to coach either the Oakland Raiders or the Atlanta Falcons if he decides to return to the profession, according to a report from CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora.

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Gruden has been a member of ESPN's Monday Night Football broadcast since 2009, and has repeatedly turned down coaching offers from various teams during that time. La Canfora notes that the Raiders make sense for Gruden, however, given his ties to the organization:

Gruden coached previously in Oakland and retains strong ties there and landing him would be a major coup for the Raiders. A year ago, with Allen and McKenzie in their first years on the job, it would have been even more financially restrictive to sweep out a regime and usher in a new one, let alone a staff as highly compensated as Gruden's would be. That's lessened some, one year later, and several sources who know Gruden well believe he is more inclined now than ever to return to the sidelines after rebuffing repeated overtures in the past.

Gruden began his coaching career with the Raiders in 1998 and led Oakland to the postseason in 2000 and 2001, including a trip to the AFC Championship Game against the Baltimore Ravens after a 12-4 season in 2000. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers, looking to replace Tony Dungy, then traded two first-round and two second-round draft picks to the Raiders in order to hire Gruden as coach.

The Buccaneers would go on to win the Super Bowl the very next season, against the same Raiders team that Gruden has just been traded from. Tampa Bay would not win a playoff game after that Super Bowl victory, however, and after seven seasons Gruden was fired as the Bucs head coach in early 2009.

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