The Raiders have interviewed Kris Richard for their defensive coordinator position, as Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reports (via Twitter). Richard is the second reported candidate for the job, joining Chargers DC Gus Bradley.
A DB coach with Seattle from 2010-2014, Richard was one of the architects of the club’s famed Legion of Boom, and he served as the ‘Hawks defensive coordinator from 2015-17. But Seattle elected to cut ties at the end of the 2017 campaign, and Richard moved on to the Cowboys as the defensive backs coach/defensive passing game coordinator. His first year in Dallas and the resume he built in Seattle garnered him plenty of attention as a potential head coach, and at one point he was even rumored to be the leading candidate for the Dolphins’ HC gig (which ultimately went to Brian Flores).
He was a casualty of the staff shakeup that took place when Mike McCarthy became the Cowboys’ head coach last year, and he spent the 2020 season out of football, though he did interview for the Giants’ HC job, and he received consideration for a spot on the 49ers’ defensive staff. He does not appear to be a HC candidate in this year’s cycle, but his track record should be enough to land him a high-level position.
If the 41-year-old were to become the Raiders’ DC and have success, he would almost certainly be right back on the short list of top head coaching prospects in 2022. Vegas’ defense was near the bottom of the league in terms of yardage and points allowed this season, and the unit is lacking in high-end talent.
On the other hand, young players like Clelin Ferrell and Maxx Crosby have flashed, and the team will have a full complement of draft picks and a reasonable amount of cap space to improve. It’s possible that a new coordinator and a few new pieces can key a significant turnaround.
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