Both the Las Vegas Raiders and LA Chargers are undergoing big changes in 2024. Both teams fired their respective head coaches and general managers during the season and will look to fill both job vacancies in the offseason (unless the Raiders locker room forces the team to bring back Antonio Pierce).
To make these parallels even more interesting, the Chargers and Raiders are the two early favorites to hire Jim Harbaugh if he makes the leap to the NFL. Harbaugh has a history with both teams and there are benefits of both jobs; the Chargers have Justin Herbert and a premium draft pick to build on while the Raiders have shown the willingness to pay big money for head coaches and can take J.J. McCarthy in the 2024 NFL Draft.
Harbaugh hired Don Yee, who ironically has ties with both the Chargers and Raiders. It is really anyone's guess on which team Harbaugh will choose (if he comes to the NFL at all) as it may come down to something as simple as the general manager that is hired.
If that is the case then the Raiders might be in the lead. Las Vegas requested to interview Indianapolis Colts assistant GM Ed Dodds. Dodds has emerged as many Chargers fans' dream GM option because of what it might mean in the Harbaugh sweepstakes.
Raiders hiring Ed Dodds would hurt Chargers' Jim Harbaugh pursuit
Thankfully, it is just an interview at this point in time and the Chargers have the means to also interview Dodds for their vacant position as well. But if the Chargers sit around and don't pursue Dodds then it could be the beginning of the end of the Harbaugh saga.
Harbaugh is not destined to go wherever Dodds goes but because of the relationship between the two, it is obvious what the Raiders are doing here. If Harbaugh is really split between the two AFC West teams then he will probably join the one who just hired someone he is close with as the GM.
After all, Harbaugh is going to want some degree of say on the roster decisions and having someone whom he is close with who is willing to work with him is the best way for Harbaugh to get that. Dodds is not the only GM that could provide Harbaugh that luxury but he definitely is the one that he is most familiar with.
With Michigan's season officially over after winning the National Championship, the speculation around Harbaugh and his future is only going to amp up. The Chargers can't just standby and hope he chooses them. The Bolts need to take action and that starts with Dodds.