‘We have to be a much more detailed football team'
Silver & Black Illustrated|February - March 2021
Like so many Raiders fans, coach Jon Gruden found himself searching for answers after the Raiders’ second-half collapse that cost the team a spot in the expanded playoffs.

Clearly the team is in dire need of upgrade at many positions, and although there were a few bright moments, they were too few and far between to really notice. Gruden talked about some of those issues as well as his offseason plans to help Las Vegas shake off its inconsistent way while speaking with reporters …

Q: What are the primary areas of improvement that the team needs to make moving forward?

A: I think we can improve in every area. I know that sounds corny, but we have to improve in every area. Obviously our short-yardage offense, third-and-1, very disappointing. We were No. 1 in the league on third-and-10 and I think we were No. 32 on third-and-1. Unbelievable. Defensively, we have to improve on all three levels, there’s no question about that. We need some impact plays from our defense: sack-strip fumbles, turnovers. We have to do a lot better job on the defensive side of the ball. (Daniel) Carlson had a great year, (AJ) Cole had a great year, but we need to score on special teams and generate better field position. I think we can improve in a lot of areas but we did do some good things this year.

Q: Nicholas Morrow talked about how accountability needs to be improved from both players and coaches. Did you see that and how do you go about addressing that?

A: We have a lot of young players that, they have to be available, not only on Sunday or gameday, but they have to be available on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday. Some of the details, they have to show up on tape. We have to be a much more detailed football team, especially in some areas on defense. It’ll be a critical area that we try to improve here.

Q: What was your high point here this season in Las Vegas in the team’s first year at Allegiant Stadium?

A: I think the high point for all of us was getting that first win on the road at Carolina – the first win in Las Vegas Raiders history. And then getting our first home win against the New Orleans Saints. Getting those first signature Las Vegas Raiders wins was really exciting. We had some high moments, obviously winning on the road against some good teams. But I’m really excited about the mental toughness that this team showed. I think it’s going to help us in the long run.

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