Raiders HC Josh McDaniels; Jimmy Garoppolo

Raiders HC Josh McDaniels A Favorite To Be First NFL Coach Fired In 2023

Head coach Josh McDaniels and the Las Vegas Raiders built a nice foundation of momentum heading into the 2023 regular season. The team looked dominant in the first two weeks of the preseason before stumbling vs. the Cowboys in the finale.

Still, the Silver and Black roster looked far more competitive than the one we watched last season. A mind-blowing 42 members of the current roster are Dave Ziegler draft picks or signings. Ziegler and McDaniels deserve their fair share of credit for the strong start to the preseason.

But based on the current betting lines, perhaps those two seats are warmer than anyone anticipates.

Granted, betting odds are not the end all be all, but generally, Vegas has a pretty good pulse on how things stand. This makes McDaniels’ placement on a particular list quite damning. Covers.com has compiled lines for the first NFL head coach firing in 2023. Only two ranked higher than the Raiders’ leader.

Dallas Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy and Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Todd Bowles sit at +600, while McDaniels checks in just below them at +700. McCarthy’s spot atop the list comes as no surprise. Every Cowboys coach is on the hot seat at all times.

Todd Bowles is a little more surprising on the surface, but the Bucs are headed toward a nosedive this season, and it wouldn’t be a surprise if Bowles is the fall guy. He has already been fired once as a head coach with the Jets; history will likely repeat itself if he can’t pull a rabbit out of his hat.

Calling Cap: Josh McDaniels Is Not On The Hot Seat

As for McDaniels — I’m not buying that he’s a top-three most likely candidate to receive a pink slip in 2023. Not a chance. That isn’t to say the 47-year-old is an elite head coach; he has to prove that still. But I don’t see Raiders owner Mark Davis as eager to fire the second-time coach.

Davis has shown increased patience with the new regime, allowing them to essentially gut the locker room to bring in “their own guys”. Ziegler worked with McDaniels the last two off-seasons, handcrafting the roster in their image. A disappointing 2023 campaign would certainly get the coals rolling under McDaniels, but it is unlikely Davis would pull the plug, regardless of the record.

The Athletic’s Vic Tafur has gone on record saying as much. “My opinion hasn’t changed. This year’s record doesn’t matter, and McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler are counting on Davis’ newfound patience to build the roster up the right way. That means drafting well, something the last two regimes did not do.”

The Raiders Are Committed To The Current Regime

Raiders fans may not want to hear it, but the likelihood of McDaniels returning as coach in 2024 is high. The betting line is not worth dabbling in; throw some money on Todd Bowles if you want a chance at earning some cash.

Like it or not, Josh McDaniels is sitting pretty in Vegas. And he is the one controlling the thermostat.

*Top Photo: Heidi Fang/Las Vegas Review-Journal

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