Despite rumors that team owner Al Davis was pursuing possible candidate for the past week and a half, the Raiders brass appears to have abruptly cut-off their head coaching search, and has decided to walk into the next NFL season with the same head coach that guided the to upset victories over the Pittsburgh Steelers and Philadelphia Eagles.
After reports suggested names like Jim Fassel, Marc Trestman, and even Stanford head coach, Jim Harbaugh, news broke through Schefter that the Raiders have seemingly given up trying to replace Cable.
So, why is it that Raiders (and NFL) fans feel like they’re wasting the 2010 season? Well, that’s because, in all reality, they are.
Cable isn’t a horrible coach, not by any means. But there still isn’t something right with him. Whether it’s the questionable decision-making, poor play-calling, or punching guys in the face.
Considering his extensive background in coaching offensive lines and monitoring offenses, Cable’s results, in which his line gave-up 49 sacks (30th in the NFL), weren’t good.
And it only gets worse. While the defense was stout enough to make several games competitive, and even earn the Raiders a few interesting upsets, the offense simply wasn’t on any kind of a level to make this team completely legit.
The offense ranked 21st in rushing yards per game (considered their strong suit), while finishing 31st in points scored and total offensive yards per game.
However, the one positive that can be taken out of Cable’s presence, is that he stood his ground against Al Davis, suggesting that former number one overall pick, JaMarcus Russell, wasn’t the “great” quarterback Davis thought he was.
Cable even went as far as benching Russell, who threw just three touchdowns to 10 interceptions, while completing an atrocious 48.8 percent of his passes.
Davis was reportedly enraged by this, leading towards the owner questioning whether or not Cable had a firm grasp on the team, or if he was just attempting to push all the blame on the young quarterback.
While no writer is about to come to Cable’s aid and say he’s a braniac for benching Russell, or that Russell was completely to blame, it’d also be foolish to say Davis had any kind of an argument over the matter.
However, despite all that has gone on in the ugly triangle between Davis, Cable, and Russell, 2010 may end up showing us a season that is very much the same as 2009.
Russell is likely to still be on the roster and competing for the starting job, as Bruce Gradkowski still has to return from an injury, and Charlie Frye and J.P. Losman will be competing just to make the team.
The only thing that will really hurt Russell’s chances at the starting job or if Davis finally places him among those who feel Russell is a bust, and then elects to draft a new franchise passer.
Otherwise, Raider Nation is looking forward to a head-to-head battle between Cable and Davis in 2010, to see which one cracks first over JaMarcus Russell’s playing time, or possibly lack thereof.
Cable is rumored to also be losing play-calling duties, which displays just another way that the head coach has lost control over the situation, his own job, and his own team.
But with everything we’ve seen, whether he keeps his job or not, and regardless of the Raiders 2010 record, we simply can’t blame Cable.
Tom Cable didn’t draft Darrius Heyward-Bey way earlier than he should have been drafted. Cable didn’t vouch for JaMarcus Russell and wait until the season was in the can to bench him. And Tom Cable didn’t ask to be a lame duck going into 2010.
He was there, and he was involved in those situations.
But if it hasn’t been painfully evident already, this latest news should be a giant neon sign that reads: Al Davis is still very much in control of the Oakland Raiders.