Raiders

Presented By Ray Ratto
Raiders

Mark Davis didn’t have to give Jon Gruden a piece of the Oakland Raiders after all. A huge piece of his flesh was sufficient.
 
The deal with Gruden is done – a preposterous 10 years and an elephantine $100 million – and will be announced Tuesday.
 
It is a massive overpay by any definition, especially when you consider that Gruden’s actual resume isn’t as stellar as Raider fans both in the East Bay and across the universe desperately need it to be.
 
But because they desperately need it to be, Mark Davis desperately needs it to be. And because Davis has always been almost creepily obsessed with returning Gruden to his quasi-ancestral home, his desperation was doubly so.
 
So Gruden became worth the price, at any price. Even if he doesn’t win a Super Bowl in Oakland, even if he doesn’t win a Super Bowl in Las Vegas, or Mexico City or wherever the Raiders move after that – hell, even if most of that money will go to him after he’s been fired for not being sufficiently Grudenesque.
 
Mark Davis acted on an itch, and what’s the point of being an owner if you can’t do that? Hell, that’s how Bob Kraft turned Jimmy Garoppolo into a San Francisco 49er.
 
The only bump in this seemingly freshly paved road will come when Davis’ partner/benefactors in the owners’ suites look at him aghast and say, “WHAT THE HELL DID YOU JUST DO? WE LET YOU MOVE TO LAS VEGAS AND THIS IS HOW YOU DO US?”
 
Put another way, Bill Belichick is now scandalously underpaid, and he is office-fighting on multiple fronts. Mike Tomlin is being robbed half-blind. And Marvin Lewis – well, he got an extension he probably didn’t merit so he’s probably doing fine.
 
In any event, Gruden won’t be measured by his money, and since it isn’t yours, you shouldn’t mind either. It’s whether he wins, how often he wins, and if he can win the big one with the team he beat to win the big one he got. He has to fix the locker room, he has to fix the defense, he has to fix Derek Carr . . . he’s got plenty to do, and even if it doesn’t seem like $100 million worth now, it will if he does it.
 
If he doesn’t – well, like we said, it isn’t your money, and by the time Davis can eat a digestible fraction of his contract, there’s an excellent chance it won’t be his, either.