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NFL coaches on the hot seat: Will Raiders fire Josh McDaniels after loss to Colts?

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It’s getting hotter in the desert. The Raiders are no mirage — they’re a bad team nine games into their 2022 NFL season. Las Vegas (2-7) has come up all craps after having high expectations under new coach Josh McDaniels.

Their latest loss was brutal. The Raiders didn’t score enough as home favorites against the reeling Colts on Sunday, losing 25-20 in Week 10. They fell to a team coached by six-time Pro Bowl center and former ESPN analyst Jeff Saturday, who came in with no prior NFL coaching experience.

MORE: Bill Cowher delivers impassioned rant against Colts hiring Jeff Saturday

McDaniels, former genius Patriots offensive coordinator, was supposed to lead a scoring revival in Las Vegas by getting more out of quarterback Derek Carr after reuniting him with elite wide receiver Davante Adams. The passing game is now injury-riddled (slot wideout Hunter Renfrow and tight end Darrenn Waller), but the Raiders have underachieved when running back Josh Jacobs hasn’t dominated in the rushing attack.

Instead of cleaning up the dysfunction left from the Jon Gruden-Mike Mayock era, Vegas has created more bad vibes. Before losing a pair of one-point leads to the Colts in the second half Sunday, the Raiders had blown a 20-point advantage vs. the Cardinals and 17-point cushions vs. both the Chiefs and Jaguars.

Six of the Raiders’ seven losses have been one-possession games. The other defeat was the team’s lowest point, a 24-0 shutout by the Saints in New Orleans in Week 8. Bottom line, the collective results haven’t been good.

McDaniels isn’t guaranteed the rest of this season, let alone a second full season, thanks to this disaster. The only thing that might save him from a quick firing by owner Mark Davis is the fact it would require a large buyout of the coach’s contract. Unlike Matt Rhule (Panthers) and Frank Reich (Colts), the two coaches fired during the season thus far, McDaniels also is helped by Las Vegas wanting to avoid an embarrassing one-and-done scenario after the embarrassing fallout from Gruden’s departure.

MORE: NFL standings: Updated playoff picture for Week 10

NFL coaches on the hot seat

Here’s a temperature update on the other NFL coaches who were most on the hot seat going into Week 10:

Nathaniel Hackett, Broncos (hotter)

Hackett’s team looked terrible on offense after a bye in losing 17-10 at Tennessee. Russell Wilson struggled again and the running game disappeared. Losing wide receiver Jerry Jeudy (ankle) and two more offensive linemen to injuries didn’t help. McDaniels was under a bigger spotlight in Week 10, but more of the same issues with Hackett occurred as his team fell to 3-6, a more disappointing record in relation to higher expectations in Denver.

Lovie Smith, Texans (hotter)

Smith’s team keeps showing fight, but in the end, that’s not enough. Houston isn’t all all that competitive with a shaky quarterback (Davis Mills) and a historically atrocious run defense. The only thing that might save Smith is the fact the team just went one-and-done with predecessor David Culley.

Kliff Kingsbury, Cardinals (colder)

Kingsbury has been feeling the heat all season with Kyler Murray, the offense and the team as a whole underachieving after a playoff berth in 2021. He got a needed reprieve by beating Sean McVay and the Rams on the road with Colt McCoy starting in place of the injured Murray.

MORE: Cardinals’ Zach Ertz carted off after suffering knee injury vs. Rams

Dan Campbell, Lions (colder)

Break up the Lions! They’re on a heater, up to 3-6 after gritty division wins over the Packers and Bears. The team and GM Brad Holmes are being patient with Campbell, and some of that good “Hard Knocks” life has all but made Campbell completely safe for 2023.

Ron Rivera, Commanders (hotter)

Rivera saw his team lose a lead to the Vikings in Week 9 to fall back below .500. He can prepare for worse results in prime time against the undefeated Eagles on Monday night. The Commanders’ potential transition to new ownership soon doesn’t help his chances.


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