Head Coach Jack Del Rio
It might not have been the way the Oakland Raiders wanted the season to end, but regardless of Saturday's loss to the Houston Texans, the team should be proud of what it was able to accomplish this season. Following the 27-14 loss in the AFC Wild Card round, Head Coach Jack Del Rio delivered a speech to the team, and expressed that he was proud of each member for their devotion and effort all season long.
Sunday afternoon, the Raiders head coach was back at the team's Alameda, Calif., practice facility to recap the team's season and what's next on the agenda for the Silver and Black.
Here are the quick hits from his press conference:
Del Rio talked about the team's effort on Saturday, and what he saw from the group.
"There's been a great deal accomplished, there's no question about that. Is it enough? No. I want more. We want more. As an organization, our goals are higher. So, that's not going to change. We're not going to pretend that it wasn't really good. You win 12 games, that's hard to do in this league. We won six in a row at one stretch and never really had back-to-back losses prior to yesterday. A lot of really good things were going on and are going on. We want to build on those. Recognize where we need to be better, and there's several areas where we must be better in. Just kind of own up to it and roll up our sleeves and get busy."
Del Rio shared his thoughts on how the defense played throughout the season.
"I thought we played really well early in games, really well late in games and got turnovers throughout games. That's what enabled us, that's part of what helped us win 12 games. What we didn't do particularly well, and we closed the halves well, first and second half, but there were far too many explosive plays allowed this year, whether it be run or pass. That's, you know, that's an area that must be addressed. That might be the number one thing that we must do better going into 2017."
He expressed that the loss is fresh right now, and will take some time to get over, but overall he is very proud of the team.
"Well, less than 24 hours out right now, so it's still a little raw. We'll definitely be able to look back and be proud of what we accomplished this year and then let that sting that you feel from having it end the way it did be a reminder of how hard you need to push, how much work is in front of us, and let that fuel the type of offseason we need to have."
**Del Rio broke down the evaluation process, and stated that he and General Manager Reggie McKenzie will communicate regarding the construction of the roster.
"I think the first part in that process is to evaluate the roster real thoroughly. We'll begin that process now as a staff, meet with [General Manager] Reggie [McKenzie] and his people. Reggie and I will talk it through and that's kind of how we do it. We'll have decisions to make. I'm sure we'll want to keep as much of the nucleus. We have a good, young nucleus of players here. We want to keep as much of that nucleus intact as possible. That will be the plan going forward."
He spoke about wide receiver Andre Holmes production, and what he contributes to the team on offense and special teams.
"He's been a really good player for us. Those are the kinds of decisions… You can't keep everybody. You can't play everybody, especially once you start paying your quarterback what he's going to end up making, which I'm sure will be a pretty nice amount. So we've been fortunate the last few years, we've been able to do more other places because we didn't have a lot put in the quarterback number. As that number goes up, it'll limit some of the things you have to do."