Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio had two years left on his original contract. It was sent through the paper shredder on Friday.
Del Rio was given a new four-year contract that includes a raise over his previous deal and carries through the 2020 season.
“We are excited to continue building on the strong foundation that has been established and this is a significant step in achieving that goal,” Raiders owner Mark Davis said in a statement.
Del Rio was a major factor in the Raiders’ return to relevance, and changed the culture of a losing franchise that now expects to win. The team has a stable of young talent guided by a head coach well respected in the locker room and around the league.
The Raiders went 7-9 in his first season and 12-4 last year, a record that ended a long playoff drought.
A Del Rio extension was no surprise. It had been in the works a few weeks, with productive talks between both sides. Del Rio was the NFL’s lowest-paid head coach entering this hiring period, and deserved a raise and an extension despite having a few years left on his original deal.
This is another sign Davis believes he has the right people in important positions and wants to give his football product long-term stability. He extended general manager Reggie McKenzie’s contract last summer and Del Rio on Friday.
Franchise quarterback Derek Carr will likely receive a contract extension this offseason, and 2016 NFL Defensive Player of the Year Khalil Mack will get a long-term deal when the time is right.
That should keep the Raiders competitive with strong leadership in the front office, the coaching staff and on both sides of the football.