Are Dominos Falling In Place For Jim Harbaugh’s Return To Raiders?

Current Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh began his NFL coaching career with the Raiders back in 2002, when they still resided in Oakland. Could he soon be returning to the Silver and Black?

We all know the Raiders have a game today that could very well determine their future, more so than perhaps any other regular season finale in recent memory. Why is that? Well, you have an interim coach looking to stay on and have that tag removed from his job title. You also have a starting quarterback with quite possibly the biggest game of his career. However, much of the news surrounding the Silver and Black these past few days has had to do with outside forces. Those forces being the winds of change, we’re, of course, talking about Jim Harbaugh.

Are the Raiders serious suitors?

More than just speculation or water cooler talk, there does appear to be traction regarding Harbaugh’s return. It does, however, appear that Las Vegas isn’t the only suitor. Tony Pauline from Pro Football Network reported yesterday that the Chicago Bears are in the running as well, but word regarding the Raiders has weight to it.

“Jim Harbaugh to the Las Vegas Raiders is more than just some wild rumor. Sources tell me the Raiders are Harbaugh’s choice of franchises and a few believe it could happen next week if the Raiders don’t make the playoffs. Multiple sources tell Pauline the Chicago Bears will also make a push for Harbaugh but the Michigan coach has his heart set on the Silver and Black.”

Other pieces are falling in place…

NFL Insider Ian Rapoport also reported that the interest in Harbaugh’s services is real via There’s another important development surrounding Harbaugh’s apparent imminent return to the NFL, and that’s his future coaching staff.

Raider Nation is salivating over the name Vic Fangio. After an underwhelming head coaching stint with the Denver Broncos, Fangio will likely be relieved of his duties by the time of this writing, or be close to it. He would likely reunite with Harbaugh and take over the defensive coordinator role, as he previously did during Harbaugh’s time with the San Francisco 49ers. Can you imagine Fangio coaching a defense led by Maxx Crosby and Yannick Ngakoue?

Once a Raider…

When Harbaugh was last involved with the Raiders, he was the quarterbacks’ coach under Bill Callahan from 2002 to 2003. So, not only was he a coach on the last coaching staff that got the organization to the Super Bowl, but he coached NFL MVP Rich Gannon. We all saw the work he did with the 49ers and the quarterbacks they had: Alex Smith and Colin Kaepernick. Raider Nation is undoubtedly salivating at the thought of what he could do with Derek Carr. Let’s stay tuned.

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*Top Photo: Courtesy of Detroit Free Press

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