- Head coach of the Raiders, Jon Gruden has hired old friend Rod Marinelli to be his new defensive line coach.
- Brentson Buckner, the previous coach, turned the entire defensive line around for the better only to be fired by Gruden.
- Gruden is hoping to repeat his past history with Marinelli when they worked together in Tampa.
OAKLAND, Calif. – Oakland Raiders head coach Jon Gruden is making a defensive coach change by firing Brentson Buckner who has been with the team for one year. To replace Buckner, Gruden has chosen 70-year-old Rod Marinelli of the Dallas Cowboys.
The replacement for the Raiders is 22 years older than their former coach.
Buckner more than did his job for Oakland and their defensive line. The team had only 13 sacks in 2018 until Buckner came along and got them 32 sacks on record for the 2019 season. The entire line tightened up under his direction, but the team finished with a record of 7-9 which wasn’t good enough to make it to postseason play.
Will The Marinelli Sauce Bring The Team Future Postseason Flavor?
At 70 years old, Marinelli was looking toward the offramp of coaching only to be given this opportunity by Gruden. It’s true, Buckner’s defensive line stats were impressive, but the veteran coach from Dallas had slightly better numbers.
Even with the defense that Marinelli created for the Cowboys, his team still finished with an 8-8 season. With the better statistics and the history that Gruden and Marinelli share, this reunion has nothing to do with Buckner’s overall performance for the team.
The veteran Marinelli was able to help Gruden bring the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to their first and only Super Bowl win in their history in 2003 because of the chemistry the two shared. They worked together for many years with the Tampa Bay organization.
Gruden is hoping to bring that same strategy and winning season to the Raiders with the help of his old friend.
While it seems that Buckner got the short end of the stick for this situation, he will no doubt be picked up by another team in the future. He has coached for three different organizations over the course of the last seven years.
A fourth team will scoop him up. After all, he did turn the Raiders’ defense around in one year’s time.
With Gruden and Marinelli teaming up once again, the odds of the Las Vegas Raiders becoming a Super Bowl contender may spike over the offseason. The duo’s history has shown they can make it happen.
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