Did Michael Mayer hint that Josh McDaniels made it hard to come into work?

When a head coach has the disastrous tenure that Josh McDaniels did with the Las Vegas Raiders, it can infect an entire locker room with negativity, and that may have been the case with tight end Michael Mayer during his rookie season.

McDaniels lasted just a season and a half in Las Vegas, with the former head coach putting up a 6-11 record in his first season before going 3-5 over the first half of 2023, which helped lead to his getting the boot before Week 9.

Antonio Pierce, who is now the full-time head coach, took over as the interim head coach after McDaniels was let go and immediately found success, with the Raiders sporting a 5-4 mark over the final nine games and looking like a completely different team en route to nearly making the playoffs.

Mayer spoke to the media on Tuesday during the team’s first open session of organized team activities and had a very notable quote about his first season.

“My mentality, my attitude this year — nothing wrong with last year — it’s just different this year,” Mayer said, per Vegas Sports Today. “I’m way happier, I’m way more positive. I love to be out here on this field, I love to play football. It’s what I do, it’s my job. I’ve definitely flipped the script a little bit. Last year, maybe there were some days I didn’t want to come in or something was going on. I flipped the script. It’s time to dig down, play some ball, win some ballgames and do what I need to do for this team. Rookie year is over, that’s way in the past, I’ve already reflected on it, I’ve already put it behind me. I don’t even think about it anymore.”

Even though he didn’t say McDaniels’ name directly, some believe Mayer’s lack of desire to come into work some days in 2023 was a result of his former head coach being a total disaster, which he no doubt was.

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It’s hard to say for sure, as there could be a multitude of reasons why that was the case. However, given how bad things were under McDaniels, it can’t be ruled out.

Whatever the case may be, it’s good to see Mayer has “flipped the script” ahead of his second season and has a much different attitude this time around.

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