Raiders Rumors: Las Vegas Blocks Interview Request For DC Patrick Graham
Patrick Graham, Raiders
Sep 18, 2022; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Las Vegas Raiders defensive coordinator Patrick Graham reacts in the second half against the Arizona Cardinals at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

With their season now over, the focus for the Las Vegas Raiders turns towards finding a new permanent head coach for the team moving forward. But the franchise still has other members of their staff to think about as well and defensive coordinator Patrick Graham is garnering attention around the league.

The Raiders’ defense certainly saw some improvement, especially down the stretch of the season where they allowed just 15 points per game over the last five contests. As such, other teams are interested in Graham, but the Raiders are not looking to let him go just yet, at least not for a lateral move.

According to Ian Rapaport of NFL Network, the Raiders blocked a request from another team to interview Graham for their defensive coordinator position:

Teams are allowed to block coordinators from lateral moves which is why the Raiders could make this decision. That isn’t the case for head coaching jobs, however, and the Los Angeles Chargers have requested to interview Graham for their head coach opening as well, which shows the respect Graham has garnered around the league.

It is worth noting that the Raiders are expected to allow their permanent head coach, whoever that may be, to make their own decisions regarding inheriting staff members. If Antonio Pierce gets the job, it would probably be more likely for Graham to remain with the team. Should someone else get the position, such as Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh who has been rumored, he may have others in mind which would free Graham up to do as he pleases.

The Raiders have pieces on the roster to take that next step into playoff contention, but the franchise has to make the right decision when it comes to who will be leading the way. Pierce did an excellent job as interim coach, and some of the credit for his success has to go to his coordinators as well. Graham is clearly viewed as a potential future head coach in this league.

The Raiders believe in him as well, which is why they aren’t ready to let him go just yet, or at least until the new head coach is known, and then they will move from there.