HENDERSON, Nev. -- Las Vegas Raiders interim coach Antonio Pierce is making his case to get the job full time, especially in the wake of a blowout victory over the Chargers and Sunday's upset of the Chiefs.

"I'm going to keep saying it: As long as it looks right, sounds right and smells right, I'm fine with it. Win, lose or draw," Pierce said Tuesday. "And I'm going to be me, and [the players] are going to be them. And when this bad boy's over with, hopefully it all works out and we're together for more years to come.

"And hopefully [Raiders owner] Mark Davis sees improvement and growth within our team. He sees the style and play that he wants from the Raiders. He sees a fan base that's behind us. He sees a building that loves coming to work and loves being here and people that's covering the team, enjoying covering the team. And at the end of the day, we got to win. And right now, my record, our record, is 4-3."

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Pierce, promoted from linebackers coach after the Halloween night firings of coach Josh McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler, has the Raiders playing inspired football, even as the two most recent wins came on the heels of a decidedly uninspired 3-0 home loss to the Minnesota Vikings.

At the time, Davis told ESPN that he was "intrigued" by Pierce and came away "impressed" with him after his interview, adding that he wanted Pierce to "lead, not necessarily coach. To delegate to the coordinators and other position coaches. Be somebody they could follow. I felt good about it. I felt good about him."

Raiders right tackle Jermaine Eluemunor said recently the players "love" playing for Pierce and Champ Kelly, who was promoted from assistant GM to replace Ziegler.

Still, Davis cannot unilaterally name Pierce, who is Black, as the Raiders' full-time coach. Per the updated Rooney Rule, Davis must interview at least two "external" minority candidates for the job before making the hire.

"My résumé's on the grass, which, I can put up a fancy presentation, I've seen that before," Pierce said. "I can put up stats. I can put up my résumé. But the best thing that happened for me was the opportunity. And like I said, maybe last week, the worst day I was going to be as a head coach was my first day. ... I really take pride in growing each and every day to get better. No different than when I was a player -- get better, and by the end you look at it, whatever your career was and whatever my coaching career is, that you sit there and say, 'Look, this is what he was.'"

Defensively, the Raiders have taken a huge step forward with Pierce.

Opponents were averaging 23.4 points under McDaniels. They're averaging 15.3 points under Pierce, who retained defensive coordinator Patrick Graham. The turnover margin was minus-8 before the switch; it's plus-5 under Pierce.

The Raiders also rank first in the NFL in scoring defense since Pierce took over. They were 22nd through Week 8. Since Week 9, the Raiders have blitzed less -- a league-low 12% of dropbacks (they were at 24% through Week 8, 15th highest in the league) -- but have more sacks under Pierce, 24-16. And their opponents' Total QBR has dropped from 60 to 39 with Pierce as interim coach.

Using a more zone-heavy scheme on defense (77% of dropbacks since Week 9, second highest in the league to the Indianapolis Colts' 79%, compared to 64% through Week 8), the Raiders have had two defensive touchdowns in each of the past two games.

The Raiders (7-8) close out the season with games at the Colts (8-7) and at home against the Denver Broncos (7-8). Per NFL Next Gen Stats, the Raiders have a 12% chance to make the playoffs and a 2% chance to win the AFC West for the first time since 2002, which could happen if they win out and the Chiefs lose out.

Asked how much the Christmas Day win on national television in Kansas City might bolster his case for the full-time job, Pierce was philosophical.

"So, we're what, 2-1 in the division, beating [the Chiefs] at home," he said. "How many times did it happen in the last 25 years at the Raiders? Does anybody know? I don't know the exact number. Less than a handful, right?"

The Raiders have won 11 times at Arrowhead since 1998, but only twice since 2013.

"Most of those guys were [offensive] gurus, not a defensive coach who never did it before, right?" Pierce said. "And did it a certain way, right? Did it our way, right? The Raiders way, right? [Davis] will figure that out."