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News » CANDID CAM: Raiders' Davis takes swing, so to speak, at Gilbride

CANDID CAM: Raiders' Davis takes swing, so to speak, at Gilbride

CANDID CAM: Raiders' Davis takes swing, so to speak, at Gilbride
A month from now, Kevin Gilbride's stock might be exceptionally high if he's coming off a second straight Super Bowl championship as the New York Giants offensive coordinator.

That would give him serious credibility for any team still looking for a coach, perhaps so much so that he wouldn't stoop to the Raiders' post that he reportedly interviewed for Saturday.

But Gilbride just might be hungry enough for another head coaching job he went 6-16 with the San Diego Chargers 10 years ago that he'd buy Davis' sales pitch. Norv Turner was desperate enough to become a head coach again that he served a two-year stint with the Raiders.

Turner's tenure didn't work out so well (at least with the Raiders, but it has since with the playoff-winning San Diego Chargers after his 2006 layover with the 49ers.)

Don't you get the feel that Gilbride would give off the same vibe as Turner did in Oakland -- retread coach, older offensive mind, uninspiring to a fleeting fan base?

It's hard to consider him a positive candidate for the Raiders and think he could actually flip a locker room still infected by six consecutive losing seasons.

Gilbride, 57, is believed to be the first coach Al Davis has interviewed this offseason, reportedly doing so over the phone Saturday.

He's been on Davis' radar for more than a month. But when Gilbride's name was mentioned last week as a possible candidate in various reports, Raiders senior executive John Herrera disputed those reports, saying: "Every one is false and unfounded. They're just throwing pie against the wall."

How's that pie taste, now? Gilbride's interview Saturday was first reported by the NFL Network and later confirmed by the Bay Area News Group's Steve Corkran.

Davis probably didn't just ask Gilbride what it was like to take a punch from a Ryan family member and if he'd like to keep Rob Ryan Buddy's son - as the Raiders defensive coordinator. He surely quizzed him on the Giants' successful use of three running backs, which Davis has in his stable with Darren McFadden, Justin Fargas and Michael Bush.

That this interview apparently took place on the phone makes you wonder just how serious a candidate Gilbride is, not to mention that the Raiders would have to wait to name him coach until the Giants' postseason run ends.

I doubt Gilbride would ditch the Giants for the Raiders, that this is more of a way to market himself. I also doubt he could transform a franchise that's young offensively and porous defensively. Then again, there are only 31 other NFL coaching jobs available, and his name hasn't been mentioned at least publicly - with those openings in Denver, Cleveland, St. Louis, Detroit and New York (Jets).

Most likely, Davis is on a reconnaissance mission, gathering as much information as he can about Gilbride's own offensive philosophies and other league-wide trends.

If Gilbride is Davis' first choice, where's he been in past Raiders coaching searches? And when's the last time Davis hired his first choice, because he's previously settled for Lane Kiffin (when Steve Sarkisian rejected him) and Art Shell (when Bobby Petrino didn't bite) and Turner (when Sean Peyton stayed with the Cowboyos)?

A minority candidate still has to be interviewed to comply with the league's hiring guidelines, and Davis is certainly not one who'll ignore that considering his pro-diversity history.

Not to bury the lead, here, but we're all wondering just how Davis is going to interview all his candidates. Gilbride's chat reportedly was over the phone, and that's understandable because he's on the other side of the country getting ready for the playoffs.

We know Davis' health prevented him from attending the Raiders' season finale at Tampa Bay. Is Davis actually going to interview any candidates face to face?

And why not interview Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels? If he's willing to interview elsewhere, Al should call him. Or maybe he's sworn off baby-faced, 32-year-old offensive minds after Lane Kiffin.

While we await leaks about further interviews, just go and order up more pie.

And if you are having fun tracking this offseason's coaching moves throughout the NFL, it looks like 2010 will be a banner session. That is, if Bill Cowher, Mike Shanahan, Mike Holmgren and perhaps Tony Dungy (and, heck, maybe even Bill Belhichick) are on the market. By the way, it's interesting that deposed 49ers offensive coordinator Mike Martz hasn't been mentioned as a candidate anyhere.

Martz interviewed with Davis before Shell got the nod to replace Norv Turner, who just pulled off a wild-card win Saturday night with his San Diego Chargers over the Indianapolis Colts. You really didn't think Peyton Manning could lead the Colts to another Super Bowl title, did you? No league MVP has gone on to win the Super Bowl in the same season since Kurt Warner in 1999 for the St. Louis Rams.

Look for Cam Inman's Web-only "Candid Cam" takes whenever there's a breaking sports story, or whenever Cam's got something to say _ in short, just about every day. You can reach Cam at cinman@bayareanewsgroup.com

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: January 4, 2009

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