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Ex-Steelers Assistant among Favorites to be Raiders Head Coach

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Steelers Brian Flores
Pittsburgh Steelers senior defensive assistant Brian Flores on Aug. 14, 2022. -- Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

A former Pittsburgh Steelers assistant coach is among the frontrunners to be the next head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders.

Former Steelers senior defensive assistant Brian Flores is among the favorites to be the next full-time Raiders head coach, according to odds posted by Bovada this week.

Flores worked for the Steelers in 2022, signing up to be the Steelers’ senior defensive assistant after he was fired as Miami Dolphins head coach at the end of the 2021 season. Flores sued the Dolphins and the NFL, alleging racial discrimination in hiring practices and that the Dolphins encouraged him to lose on purpose.

Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin didn’t hesitate in adding Flores to his staff when he became available. The longtime New England Patriots assistant moved on in 2023 to become the defensive coordinator of the Minnesota Vikings, the job Tomlin held before he became Steelers head coach.

RELATED: Brian Flores Credits Mike Tomlin for Development as Coach

Flores’ Vikings are 17th in points allowed, 17th in yards allowed and ninth in yards per play against this season. He has 11/1 odds to become the next Las Vegas head coach, per Bovada, which are tied for the seventh-best odds. 

Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh is the favorite at 5/1, followed by Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson (6/1), Miami Dolphins offensive coordinator Frank Smith (7/1), Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator Dan Quinn (8/1), Cleveland Browns defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz (19/2) and Los Angeles Rams offensive coordinator Kellen Moore (19/2).

Antonio Pierce, who was the Raiders linebackers coach before becoming interim head coach, Flores, Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Brian Johnson, Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero, Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey, Baltimore Ravens offensive coordinator Mike MacDonald, Los Angeles Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris and Green Bay Packers assistant head coach Rich Bisaccia all have 11/1 odds.

The last former Steelers assistant coach to become an NFL head coach was Bruce Arians, who was wide receivers coach and then offensive coordinator for the Steelers from 2004-11 and then became the Arizona Cardinals head coach in 2013.

The Raiders vacancy comes after general manager Dave Ziegler and head coach Josh McDaniels were both fired following a 3-5 start to the season.

Tomlin and then-Oakland Raiders coach Lane Kiffin were both hired in 2007. Since then, the Raiders are on their 10th coach and will hire their 11th next season, assuming Pierce doesn’t get the job.