Raiders hire former Chargers general manager Tom Telesco as next GM

Tom Telesco will replace David Ziegler in Las Vegas, and now work with recently promoted head coach Antonio Pierce

The Las Vegas Raiders have their next general manager.

The Raiders reached a deal to name former Los Angeles Chargers general manager Tom Telesco as their next general manager, the team announced on Tuesday night.

Telesco will replace David Ziegler in Las Vegas. Ziegler was fired midway through the season, as was head coach Josh McDaniels. Both Ziegler and McDaniels were in the middle of their second season with the team when they were fired.

"I had to get the right guy, at the right time, to fit the Raiders," Raiders owner Mark Davis said, via ESPN. "It was always a battle to play the Chargers. They always had good talent. At times, great talent. They scared you. I actually liked him, which was different for me with guys from other teams. I respected him."

Telesco was fired by the Chargers along with head coach Brandon Staley in December following a brutal 63-21 loss to the Raiders. Telesco had been in that role with the Chargers since 2013, but reached the playoffs just three times. He also spent 15 seasons in various roles in the Indianapolis Colts organization and three years as a scouting assistant with the Carolina Panthers.

Tom Telesco, who spent the last 11 seasons with the Chargers, will stay in the AFC West.
Tom Telesco, who spent the last 11 seasons with the Chargers, will stay in the AFC West. (Paul Bersebach/MediaNews Group/Orange County Register via Getty Images)

Telesco will now join the Raiders, who will also have a new head coach next fall. The Raiders removed the interim tag and promoted Antonio Pierce to officially replace McDaniels moving forward. Pierce went 5-4 with the team in the interim role and quickly won over the locker room.

Just last week, the Raiders were reportedly “locked in” on either promoting interim general manager Champ Kelly to the full-time role or hiring Indianapolis Colts assistant general manager Ed Dodds, according to The Athletic’s Tashan Reed. The team, however, “got cold feet” about pairing a first-time general manager with Pierce, who is now stepping into his first head coaching job in the league. Telesco, with a decade of experience under his belt, appears to be a safer choice.

Telesco and Pierce will now be tasked with getting the Raiders — who haven’t won a playoff game since the 2002 campaign — back to the postseason for just the second time since relocating to Las Vegas.