After Jack Del Rio led the Raiders to a 12-4 record in 2016, it seemed almost unfathomable that he would be out of a job in Oakland just one year later, but that's exactly what happened after he was fired following the team's 30-10 loss to the Chargers in Week 17.
There's no way Raiders owner Mark Davis could've fired Del Rio if he had led Oakland to the playoffs for a second straight year, but that's not what happened thanks to a December collapse that included an 0-4 record for the Raiders in the final month of the regular season.
At 6-6, the Raiders actually had a chance to save their season going into a Week 14 game against the Chiefs, but when that didn't happen, the coaching staff apparently turned on Derek Carr. According to Greg Papa, the long time radio play-by-play guy for the Raiders, the staff "turned on" Carr after he threw two interceptions in the 26-15 loss.
"This coaching staff turned on Derek Carr," Papa said this week on 95.7 The Game in the Bay Area. "After the Kansas City game they called him out in front of a whole team meeting. It wasn't just the offense or the quarterbacks, (or) a segment of the team. It was the whole team. And they ripped him in front of everybody and Derek's a prideful guy."
It's hard to say how much of an psychological effect the ripping had on Carr, but he definitely struggled the rest of the season. Over the Raiders' final three games, Carr averaged 184.4 yards passing per game and Oakland averaged just 12.3 points in three straight losses.
Papa, who's been the Raiders' radio guy since 1997, also mentioned that Del Rio wasn't always willing to take his share of the responsibility when things went wrong.
"When you have a head coach that's not designing the play (and) calling the play and then second-guessing the play and the quarterback's play on a certain play, it doesn't go well," Papa said.
If you're wondering how dialed in Papa is with the team, he actually mentioned Jon Gruden's name as a possible Del Rio replacement in early December, and that hiring is now about to happen. Gruden is expected to be introduced as the Raiders coach on Tuesday after .
Papa is now interested to see if Gruden can fix Carr, who struggled for most of the 2017 season.
"Basically, the Raiders have a broken car right now and it's Derek. It's No. 4," Papa said. "And they've got to fix this car and I am intrigued how Jon does that."
Carr already seems excited about his new coach. When someone sent him a tweet on Friday that said, "We got our coach, time to get to work," Carr had a simple six-word response.