The Oakland Raiders made some recent changes to the coaching staff, but there will be no change on the offensive line. Mike Tice is coming back.
An offseason move that has flown under the radar for most mainstream coverage was the Oakland Raiders securing offensive line coach Mike Tice with a new contract, which according to Adam Caplan, has happened.
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#Raiders OL coach Mike Tice has a deal in place with the team, source said. So offensive staff minus Musgrave is back for 2017.
After promoting Todd Downing to offensive coordinator and retaining — despite objection from many — defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr., bringing back Tice to the staff is a big move for Jack Del Rio and the team.
This signing is critical not only because of the immediate impact, such as maintaining the current identity of the offensive line and their playing style — which made them a top 3 offensive line this season — but also, it will mean the further development of offensive linemen drafted in the coming seasons.
Tice joined the Raiders when Del Rio was named head coach prior to the 2015 season. He made an immediate impact on the offensive line, helping develop Gabe Jackson and preserving and elevating the career of Donald Penn. His work with Rodney Hudson has also helped the progression of Derek Carr under center.
Furthermore, after Reggie McKenzie added Kelechi Osemele to the mix, we saw a special unit come together under Tice’s mentoring, which kept Carr on his feet all season long (until that unfortunate accident against the Colts), allowing the fewest amount of sacks in the entire NFL.
Another overlooked statistic was the success of the run game, which featured the three-headed back attack made up of Latavius Murray (788 rushing yards), Jalen Richard (491 rushing yards), and DeAndre Washington (467 rushing yards).
Looking past the unfortunate events at the closing of this season, it certainly seems the future is bright in Oakland’s trenches, and many fans will be watching to see if Tice’s unit can continue the momentum. The continued high-level play of the offensive line will also help ease the transition of Bill Musgrave to Todd Downing.
So no matter how you look at it, the Raiders bringing Mike Tice back to the coaching staff is of the upmost importance.