Cable Guy Gone; New "Jack" for the Job?
Apparently ending the season on a high note didn't help Tom Cable.
Two days after defeating the AFC West division champion Kansas City Chiefs 31-10 in their regular season finale, the Oakland Raiders informed their head coach they declined the two-year option in his contract.
"Coach Cable was informed the club would not be exercising its option for the 2011 season, and that he's free to seek employment elsewhere," said his agent Don Yee via an email to the Associated Press.
"Teams already have shown interest in Tom," Yee added.
So then the question easily is, why cut Cable now?
Especially after Oakland went a perfect 6-0 in their division, and the team finished with an 8-8 record that halted seven consecutive losing seasons.
Well, perhaps cutting Cable is easier, if one doesn't feel he's deserving of recent credit.
Minutes after ESPN's Adam Schefter reported the Cable era was over in Oakland, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Al Davis was set to have offensive coordinator Hue Jackson promoted.
After reviewing the offensive ruins the Raiders were in prior to Jackson's arrival, and the results they've accomplished since, it's easy to see why the Raiders could feel good about Jackson at the helm.
Finishing near the cellar of most offensive categories at the end of the 2009 season, Davis wanted to jolt the unit in a different direction.
Fresh off developing Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco in Baltimore, and a reputation built on his man-to-man style of coaching, Jackson possessed the bold goods Davis sought to bring to the black hole.
Months later Jackson was entrusted with play-calling duties Cable assumed since the middle of the 2008 season, with a bunch of under developed pieces in waiting and certainly desperate for the molding.
Fast forward to the end of 2010 regular season and the Raiders offense seems reformed. With the reintroduction of a longer vertical game, more play-action passing, game-breaking running plays, and red zone conversions, the Oakland's offense has vastly improved.
2010: Passing Off. (23rd), Rushing Off. (2nd), Scoring Off. (6th), Total Off. (10th)
2009: Passing Off. (29th), Rushing Off. (21st), Scoring Off. (31st), Total Off. (31st)
The top-10 finish in points and yards per game is a franchise first since the 1970 merger.
Once teetering on being a lost cause, Darren McFadden's career has been revived--rushing for 800 more yards between this season and last.
As far as Jason Campbell...
Although benched earlier this season, and admittedly consistency is a work in progress, Campbell rebounded to lead the Raiders to their first three game winning streak since 2002 while adjusting to yet another offensive system.
Just a few notes that Jackson is compiling while polishing his Raiders portfolio.
But here's a caveat...
Right before filing this story late Tuesday night, I received information from sources saying Jackson had not had any official talks with the Oakland Raiders about the head coaching vacancy at the time of this report--although clearly that could change.
Sources also added Jackson still intends to interview for the same job in San Francisco at that hour, but also cautioned the situation remains very fluid.
Yet, regardless of what happens in the next coming days, Jackson's work is clearly being recognized in Oakland.
As for that Cable guy...
He has to find a place to create some energy where in-demand services will be appreciated and not cut off in his neighborhood.