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Report: Kliff Kingsbury backs out of Raiders OC job

Las Vegas was set to hire the former Cardinals head coach but instead, Kingsbury has withdrawn his name from consideration.

Kliff Kingsbury of USC looks at the Jumbotron during pregame warmups before a game between University of Southern California and University of Notre Dame at Notre Dame Stadium on October 14, 2023 in South Bend, Indiana. Photo by Michael Miller/ISI Photos/Getty Images

Feb. 3 update: Kliff Kingsbury has withdrawn himself from the Las Vegas Raiders offensive coordinator vacancy, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter. The news comes just two days after reports began surfacing that the organization was targeting the former Arizona Cardinals head coach for the position.

Former Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson was interviewed for an offensive staff position on Thursday and could possibly be a new target for OC. The Raiders also conducted multiple interviews with UCLA head coach Chip Kelly.

The Las Vegas Raiders are hiring former Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury as their new offensive coordinator, per Adam Schefter. Kingsbury spent the 2023 season as a senior offensive analyst for the USC Trojans and will return to the NFL after one year back in the college coaching circles. The Raiders also interviewed Chip Kelly and Hue Jackson for the position.

Kingsbury spent four seasons as a player in the NFL after being a sixth-round draft pick in 2003. After spending 2007 in the Canadian Football League he joined the University of Houston’s coaching staff in 2008 as their offensive quality control coach. He was promoted to co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in 2010. Kingsbury left Houston to be the OC and QB coach at Texas A&M in 2012, but it was short-lived as he was hired as the Texas Tech head coach in 2013. He held that position until 2018 and rose to prominence with an impressive offense, including the development of Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes when he was in college.

Kingsbury first made the jump to the NFL in 2019 when he became the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals. In four seasons, he amassed a 28-37-1 record with one playoff berth (2021). Kingsbury was fired after going 4-13 in 2022 but now gets a chance to join Antonio Pierce’s staff in Las Vegas to go back to focusing on the offense and its development.

Las Vegas has yet to recover from the fallout with former quarterback Derek Carr. The Raiders didn’t address the position in the offseason outside of signing free agent QB Jimmy Garoppolo, but they largely went with rookie Aidan O’Connell under center. With the No. 13 overall pick, Las Vegas could gift Kingsbury a rookie quarterback to develop, or they could draft a playmaker wide receiver to help improve the offense.

The Raiders scored the 10th-fewest points per game in the league last year. They also had the sixth-fewest yards per game, 10th-fewest passing yards per game, and third-fewest rushing yards per game. Las Vegas will need to address the running back position in the offseason, as Josh Jacobs played last season on a one-year prove-it deal. The Raiders also need to improve its pass-catcher depth as Davante Adams struggled to shoulder the load last season. Las Vegas has decent pieces behind him with Jakobi Meyers and rookie tight end Michael Mayer, but with how tough the AFC West is, they need to continue collecting more pieces for whoever is under center.