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Josh McDaniels is not trying to emulate Bill Belichick as he enters his new head coaching gig with the Las Vegas Raiders.
McDaniels took the job on January 30 to begin his second head coaching stint of his career. His first opportunity came with the Denver Broncos in 2009, and he finished his time in Denver in 2010.
With a refreshed approach to coaching under his belt, McDaniels admitted to reporters on Thursday that he tried to emulate the “Patriot Way” during his stint with the Broncos. Now, he realizes that it is difficult to replicate, and he will focus more on establishing his own identity as a coach, as noted in a report from the team’s official website.
“I’m not Bill [Belichick], and I can’t be,” McDaniels said. “I’m just going to try to be myself and hopefully I can be a good leader for our team.”
McDaniels and the Raiders have pieces in place to win in a tight AFC West division. Davante Adams was the big get of the offseason for Las Vegas. The Raiders also picked up some players familiar with McDaniels’ style. Running back Brandon Bolden should allow McDaniels to have familiarity as he looks to establish the offense.
“I think we have a good thing going in terms of the direction that we’ve started things in,” McDaniels said. “The football part of it and the belief in how to win and some of the strategy and those kind of things, very much what I know. But the interpersonal interactions each day, the flow of the day, some of those other things that you could choose to copy if you wanted to – we have a lot of great people, like I said, and so being able to give them their responsibilities, they know what their roles are and let them go do their jobs is really important for me.
“It’s really important for them to know that I support them and I’m just here to be a resource and try to help them if I can. If I can’t, then I’m going to learn from them. It’s been great in terms of just trying to put that into motion here. I think the players and coaches know it’s not going to be that way.”
As he looks to make his mark as a head coach, McDaniels aims to create his own path.