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Raiders owner Mark Davis says he doesn't have an exact timetable for hiring a head coach. Maybe he does have a deadline, but he isn’t making it public.
The Raiders have been through seven interviews to this point. It's entirely possible that more interviews are on the way. Those discussions seem likely to come with candidates from the first wave. Nothing, however, is guaranteed.
The Raiders have three interviewees in the playoffs -- including Denver defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio -- who wouldn't come free until they lost or until the bye preceding the Super Bowl should they continue to win. The rest are free to interview again or be announced as a hire at any time.
Davis kept information well protected during a Friday conversation with CSN Bay Area. Certainly can’t blame him for that. There’s no reason why would Davis tip his hand in a competitive environment. There are six head-coaching vacancies in the NFL and, as of early Friday afternoon, no team has made a hire.
That fact allows for patience should he prefer, or at least want to speak more with, a coach locked in the playoffs.
In regards to patience, Davis said that getting a head start on hiring assistants shouldn't restrict his timeline to make a decision on a head coach.
“I don’t think so,” Davis said.
The Raiders have interviewed five people with head-coaching experience and two without. He seemed to lean toward a person with head-coaching experience – Seattle’s Darrell Bevell and Indianapolis’ Pep Hamilton do not -- before quickly righting the scales back to neutral.
“It would be preferable, but not really,” Davis said. “It’s possible that we’ll hire someone who’s never even been a coordinator.”
That last part is extremely doubtful. It seems certain that Davis has honed in on a few candidates by this point, but isn’t tipping his hand. It’s all part of his quest to find the right man.