Report: Tom Cable likely to be fired

According to the San Jose Mercury News, “all signs point to” the Raiders firing Tom Cable this offseason.

In the Raiders’ case, that means parting ways with coach Tom Cable and hitching their floundering franchise to another coach who has a fresh set of ideas and the patience to put up with quarterback JaMarcus Russell.

Managing general partner Al Davis has yet to weigh in publicly on the matter.

However, several people close to Davis say he is inclined to fire Cable and hire a new coach for the sixth time since Jon Gruden was jettisoned after the 2001 season.

When asked if he is expecting to be the coach next season, Cable said: “I am, because I see, and you all see, too, where this team is going, and what we’ve been able to accomplish in proving some things.

If Davis fires Cable and keeps Russell, that would be yet another horrendous decision in a long line of horrendous decisions by Al Davis. I’m not necessarily suggesting that Cable should be retained, but what has Russell shown in four years that would make Davis (or any owner, coach or water boy for that matter) want to keep him? Russell is absolutely abysmal and shows zero signs of ever becoming a professional quarterback.

At the very least, Cable should be credited for benching Russell and having a little success with castaways like Bruce Gradkowski and Charlie Frye. The Raiders were actually competitive with Gradkowski and Frye under center, not so much with the biggest bust in NFL history. Personally, that merits Cable keeping his job for at least another year. He’s not the Raiders’ biggest problem – Davis is, with a little aid from Russell.

We’ll see if Cable is inevitably gets the boot, although if I were a Raider fan I’d currently have that horrible, Al-Davis-is-about-to-screw-us feeling in the pit of my stomach.

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JaMarcus Russell will never succeed in the NFL

Growing up, many of us were told: “Never say never.”

But F-that – JaMarcus Russell will never succeed in the NFL, period.

During the Raiders’ putrid effort in a 16-10 loss to the Chiefs on Sunday, Oakland head coach Tom Cable benched Russell after the quarterback completed just nine of his 24 pass attempts for 67 yards. It was a typical Sunday outing for Russell, filled with accuracy issues, a complete disregard for pocket awareness and zero signs of being prepared.

After the game, Cable refused to commit to Russell as his starting quarterback moving forward and who could blame him? The former first overall pick’s 47.1 completion percentage and 5.5 YPA both rank him 30th in the NFL and he also has a 2:9 touchdown to interception ratio this season. He’s horrible, horrendous – awful.

But numbers aside, Russell will never succeed in this league because he doesn’t care. He misses open receivers and then he stands on the sidelines acting like he’s rotating in and out of a touch football game at a family barbecue. He has zero passion, zero emotion and I wonder if the guy truly even wants to play football or if he just has the occupation because he can throw a ball 70-plus yards.

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JaMarcus Russell is clueless

Following his 109-yard passing day in a 21-16 loss to the Chargers on Sunday, Raiders quarterback JaMarcus Russell thought that he did a “pretty good job.”

From the Contra Costa Times:

“I did a pretty good job,” Russell told reporters. “When it all boils down to it, you had a chance at the end to try and win. Didn’t do too much damage with the interception. No matter what happened, I think we came out and fought despite the score and just kept pushing and just came out short in the end.”

Just the mere fact that he thinks a 109-yard passing day is good shows how far Russell has to go in order to become a leader. And if you think I’m being too hard on him, remember that he also threw an interception that led to a touchdown for the Chargers, fumbled once, averaged just five yards per pass attempt and took five sacks.

Compared to some other games this year, Russell’s performance wasn’t that bad. But for him to say that he was “good” would be disconcerting to me if I were in the Raider organization because he clearly isn’t striving to make himself better if he’s willing to settle for a performance like that.

He’s long overdue to put on the big boy pants and start working on his craft. He continues to take his situation for granted (i.e. he knows the Raiders won’t replace him) and refuses to put in the work to become better. I realize he doesn’t have the best supporting cast around him, but the Raiders still deserve more from their former first overall pick.

Order restored: Jets crush Raiders

A week ago the Raiders beat the Eagles and I swear fire and brimstone started falling from the sky. Rivers and seas boiled. Forty years of darkness was upon us. Dogs and cats started living together. Mass hysteria. Earthquakes, volcanoes…

All right, enough Ghostbusters, although disagree with the greatness of that movie and I’ll punch you in your shin. Order was restored today in the NFL as the Jets hammered the Raiders 38-0 in Oakland. Rookie running back Shonn Greene exploded for 144 yards and two touchdowns on 19 carries, as Leon Washington suffered what could be a serious leg injury. If Washington misses significant time, the third-round pick out of Iowa will see more opportunities, which he certainly deserves after his performance today.

Mark Sanchez rebounded from his five-interception performance last week, as he completed nine of 15 pass attempts for 143 yards and a touchdown. Granted, Sanchez didn’t have to do much because the Jets’ built a 24-0 halftime lead thanks to their running game and multiple turnovers by the Raiders. But at least New York was able to shift the focus off its rookie QB for one week.

Speaking of those hapless, heartless Raiders, JaMarcus Russell looked putrid once again. He was pulled in the second quarter in favor of Bruce Gradkowski after he set the Jets up with their first score by fumbling close to his end zone on Oakland’s first possession. Russell also threw two interceptions and as expected, Gradkowski didn’t fair much better as he threw for only 97 yards and also lost a fumble.

So much for Oakland building off last week’s win over Philadelphia.

Raiders’ coach won’t be charged with assault

According to San Francisco Chronicle writer David White, Raiders head coach Tom Cable will not be charged for assault on former assistant coach Randy Hanson. There is still a possibility that Roger Goodell could suspend Cable, but that seems unlikely seeing as how police didn’t charge the Oakland head coach.

With this behind them, the Raiders can now move on and look to build off of their surprising victory over the Eagles in Week 6. That said, one victory isn’t going to magically turn the tide for a franchise that is still in dire straits.

While Cable can breathe a sigh of relief that he isn’t heading to jail, he still has the unenviable task of trying to turn JaMarcus Russell into a pro quarterback. Oakland’s defense played great last week, but Russell still has major issues with consistency, accuracy and his mechanics.

By all accounts, it looks like the Raiders like playing for Cable. They might not give the best effort every week (see Week 5 against the Giants), but players don’t publicly out their head coach in the media. Maybe things will start to turn around for Oakland in the near future…

…wait, I blacked out for a second – is Al Davis still there? Ah, nevermind.

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