Coach until told otherwise


There are two ways for a head coach to deal with the sort of uncertainty brought to bear by the Raiders.

There’s the Lane Kiffin approach _ show up at the Senior Bowl without a Raiders shield in sight, wearing a gray hat with an NFL logo, decline comment on the record, but send out as many smoke signals as possible to let people know Al Davis has stripped the coach of any authority and that continued employment isn’t necessarily a foregone conclusion.

Or there’s the Bill Callahan approach _ named “captain of the coaches” following the trade of Jon Gruden to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, he simply rolled up his sleeves, went to work and conducted himself as a head coach should until finally informed three weeks later when invited by Davis to talk about a contract to be head coach.

As Cable surfaces in Mobile, Ala., this week for the Pro Bowl, expect him the Callahan approach. If Cable talks at all, it will be something along the lines of what he said at the end of the season. He’s already on record as saying he thought he’d be back, no reason to alter that approach now. He’ll wear the right gear and may even have “Team of the Decades” stamped on his forehead.

The Callahan and Cable situations, other than the fact that they’re both offensive line coaches who at the time had the support of their respective locker rooms (that changed dramatically for Callahan following the 2003 season), were dramatically different in that the former was the natural choice to lead a veteran team coming off consecutive division titles and the latter is 9-19 with a youthful team that has no history of success.

Unless Davis has told Cable directly he will remain on the job _ something even Adam Schefter’s definitive “Cable will return story” didn’t claim _ he’s simply working on the assumption he will be the coach until told otherwise.

Judging by how Cable handled the Randy Hanson and ESPN firestorms, he’s not going to need a vote of confidence, whether public or private, to remain sane.

Kiffin, who said later he understood his first-year “honeymoon” to be over after a 4-12 season, couldn’t handle not knowing what Davis was saying and doing behind his back. He couldn’t believe it when he someone outside the organization told him James Lofton had been hired as the wide receivers coach without his knowledge. Kiffin had talked with Lofton, but that was as far as it went.

He played the martyr and began planning an exit strategy.

The silence never seemed to bother Callahan. He was the obvious choice for the job, and many, including myself, figured he’d been told beforehand and that the Raiders simply had elected not to make the decision public. They’d tell us when they felt like it.

The assumption turned out to be wrong. Callahan wasn’t called in to talk contract until March 12 and his hiring was announced March 13.

Davis explained why he proceded that way the following day when Callahan was introduced.

“I wanted to see and we wanted to see Bill function in that role to see how the organization would operate, how would we do in the free-agent market,” Davis said. “And we felt after a short period of time we could compete with anyone.”

The same thing is going on with Cable. Davis is waiting and watching. Even if he’s already decided Cable will be back, there’s no reason to tell him or even his own public relations staff. No reason to let him get comfortable.

Extra points

— The Chicago Sun-Times is reporting the Chicago Bears hope to interview Hue Jackson for their offensive coordinator opening. Jackson interviewed with the Raiders for an undisclosed position, believed to be offensive coordinator. The Raiders said they have conducted no interviews for the head coaching position.

ESPN is reporting Jackson will meet with the Bears Tuesday.

— Looking for some kind of Raiders angle in this year’s Super Bowl? None of their castoffs have made it to this year’s big game _ not a player on either roster who has spent time with the Raiders.

Instead, you’ve got Aaron Kromer, the Saints running game and offensive line coach. Kromer, by the way, worked for the Raiders under Gruden and with Gruden at Tampa Bay and is an aspiring offensive coordinator under Sean Payton.

Hmm . . .

— When tight end Dallas Clark made the Super Bowl, a Miller was elevated to the Pro Bowl from alternate status. Unfortunately, it was Heath Miller, the first alternate from the Pittsburgh Steelers, and not Zach Miller, the second alternate from the Raiders.

Heath Miller caught 76 passes for 789 yards and six touchdowns, Zach Miller had 66 receptions for 805 yards and three touchdowns.

— Peyton Manning insists his young receivers, such as Pierre Garcon and Austin Collie, do an extra hour and a half of film study with him one day a week. That’s above and beyond what they do with their position groups.

You’ll notice the Colts aren’t huge into shifts and motions, either. They just kill you with precision execution that comes from repetitive practice and a gifted quarterback who gets angry if things aren’t perfect.

The Raiders aren’t big into shifts and motions, either. But it’s as if the two teams, when it comes to the passing game, aren’t even playing the same sport.

Of course it’s a game of talent, but it’s also huge parts coaching and executing, matching players to a scheme, and getting those players to think and play as one.


Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • Hi I’m Norco Boob, I get wasted, hahaha, hehehe

    Ah man, I got wasted, hahaha, hehehe

    Hi I’m Norco Boob, I pop pills, Hahaha Hehehehe.

    Did you see that bud? hahaaha, hehehehe.

    What a moron.

  • priesttj

    Norco Bob, that’s what you get for mentioning me, Gary and I have never had a very good relationship.

  • Hey, I’m Norco Boob, I downed a gallon of Patrone last night, haahaahahaaha, heheeheehehehehe

  • Nice chatting with the grave yard bunch….

    Tee time is 6:00am. Take care, everyone……

  • Norco Bob

    Old kell,..why do you keep spelling Patron incorrectly?..for a old man that claims to drink it alot,..dang.

  • Norco Bob

    Old Kell,…you still battling your jealousy issue with Old Al?…why dont you two 80 year olds play nice,…old folks should stick together. lol

  • Norco Bob

    TJ,..its because you call other shows, Gary gets offended,..you call Damon and others,…with Gary thats a death sentence.

  • Norco Bob

    Old Kell,..he just doesnt understand it,..Old Al is a billionaire, and old Kell hangs in a Raider blog obsessed with jealousy…Old Kell, forget it, you will never reach his status, get over it. lol

  • Norco Bob

    D-uh,,,Ima Ima IMA ima IMa…IMA VERY THUCKTHETHFUL REAL ETHTATE MOGUL,..D-UH,…but inthtead of makins big deals,…I I I I live in here, crying that im not a billionaire like Al Davith. d-uh…IMA not jealoth.

  • Norco Bob

    Hey old kell, when youre done changing that diaper,..oh never mond, I can see you now,..screaming in your room all alone, hating to hear the truth. Stupid old fool.

  • Norco, are you sure jealousy is the right word to describe our feelings toward Al? I swear..if I were given the chance to trade places with Al, I wouldn’t. A laughing stock and on his death bed. I’m more jealous of Russell than I am of Al.

  • Did you get 86’d from player’s pub, Norco? You’re home early.

  • I thought about meeting you there, too. Glad I didn’t. Looks like it was an early night for you.

  • Norco Bob

    Nah I went to Poor Reds,..but it was closed,..unsure why.

  • Morning Guys…

  • Norco Bob

    I never said everyone was jealous of old Al,..only one person is,..Old Kell,..obsession, jealousy,…cant go an hour without thinking about him,..but Kells old too,..guess old people get weird,…Kells just an angry old fool.

  • Norco Bob

    Hi La Melissa,..wattup.

  • Norco Bob

    In case you have been keeping score on the DM`s I get from famous people,..just got one tonight from Woody Paige.

  • Norco, the only place you’re going to find anyone jealous of Al is a graveyard.

  • And you’d have a tough time finding one there. Most dead people wouldn’t trade places with Al. They’d be wondering what the difference is between that and where they are now.

  • priesttj

    Bob, maybe you think you know who I am. If ever I called Damon it was 3 years ago once and I’ve called Gary maybe 5 times in my life. So maybe you think you know who I am. Ya’ kno’ the pills and all.

    I have no problem with any of those guy’s but I haven’t called KNBR in over a year and maybe 5 times in the last 3 years. I don’t do that stuff anymore at all.

    That’s why he laughed at you.

  • priesttj

    Everybody in here would love to trade places with Mr Davis let’s get real. All of you idiots think you know more than he does. Most of ya’ don’t know if the balls blownup or stuffed.

  • Norco Bob

    TJ,..maybe it wasnt Damon, I assumed it was because Gary hates his callers to call Damon,..Gary hates Damon,…so whomever you called, well Gary banned you for it…but I made it good bro,..feel free to call again. My man!

  • BHP..

    probably not, but our ego is not in the way… we would do the sound logic thing and not try to prove we were smart in the 70’s

  • Meanwhile….

    I have been in business for the past 23 years. I submitted fair bid on a job…. I was under cut by 40. per cent.. I most likely will have to lay off, another good hand, Now , I’ve got to kick him to the curb?? Hope and Change? my ass….

  • Norco Bob

    Trade places with Al?…how stupid,..who would want to trade places with anyone?…I wouldnt,…live your own life, dont trip about trading lives,..thats real odd,…I dont understand why people who dont know Al Davis feel so strongly about him,..personally I dont give a crap about him….good or bad.

  • priesttj


    sure you would and I wouldn’t give 5Cents to see it. Most of you wouldn’t know the logical thing to do if it bit yu in the ass. Give me a freakin’ break. I read this idiotic crap all the time and maybe 1.5% of you have a clue the rest are out in lalala land.

  • You’re right, Al knows more than me. Trading Gruden, drafting Russell… I’d never question such superior knowledge.

  • Norco Bob

    TJ,…I will assume you are a professor at Stanford,…I cant see you in any other line of work. Am I wrong?

  • Priest, Davis rules. Davis/Herrera/Cable. With Russell at QB. Heyward Bey at wideout. Super Bowl. This year.

  • LOL.

  • Norco Bob

    Im still mad he sold Gruden for 8 million,..I never wanted Russell,..but I still dont give a crap about Al Davis,..when Im watching games he never enters my mind…and when hes gone I wont miss him.

  • Norco Bob

    The biggest jerk though is easily Chris Cohan,..worst owner in sports,..and I go to Warrior games.

  • Well, I’m obsessed with Al. I like to mess with his loyalists, too.

  • priesttj

    Norco Bob, I trust becaue he readily admits he’s clueless and doesn’t give a damn. He’s just in it for the enjoyment the rest of you think you know, and that is scary.

  • Norco Bob

    Hey this tv show, Parole Board, is awesome.

  • Norco Bob

    Who you talkin about TJ?

  • Norco, Cheech and Chong were on George Lopez. Lopez talked about how he went to Cheech’s house, and it took him 45 minutes to back out of the driveway he was so high.

  • Norco Bob

    You didnt need to tell me that MR,..I saw that 2 years ago,..however I did think you would have moved on by now. Hey if thats how you get your kicks,…but I dont of any loyalists in here.

  • (burp!) My bad fer bring my cr@p in here….(I’m drinking the beer somebody left in my fridge,,,, hey! it’s a sh%t job, but i’m just the drunk to do it…)


  • Norco Bob

    I met Cheech at the celeb golf tourney at Edgewood,..hes cool,…Geouge Lopez too,..havent seen his show.

  • I can’t move on. I’m hooked. I know it’s sad. I probably could use some Norcos and booze.

  • Norco Bob

    I wanted to get f`d up tonight, didnt work out though. 🙁

  • priesttj

    The other owners in the bayarea are ten times as clueless as MR davis and they all supposedly do it the “logical way” and their teams all SUCK!!

    So what’s their excuse? why did it take the Saints their entire history to make a SB? The Cards the same and the Jets haven’t been to SB in 45 years and they all domit the “logical way” give me a break will ya’?

  • Norco Bob

    MR,..totally,..no joke,..pop some, with liquor,..I promise you you wont give two shyts about Al Davis anymore. Trust me,..I used ot bag on him,..Cohan,..Lew,..but after a while I realized, they dont know I exist, would laugh if they knew I was mad at them,…so I gave it up,..they arent worth it.

  • Try Some Reality

    # Norco Bob Says:
    January 25th, 2010 at 11:37 pm

    TJ,…I will assume you are a professor at Stanford,…I cant see you in any other line of work. Am I wrong?

  • Try Some Reality

    priesttj Says:
    January 25th, 2010 at 11:45 pm

    The other owners in the bayarea are ten times as clueless as MR davis and they all supposedly do it the “logical way” and their teams all SUCK!!
    The other owners in the Bay Ares? lol. Not exactly a standard to measure against, is it? Bay Area Sports suck!

  • priest, no team in the bay area has been as bad as the Raiders and for as long. We need to install a device that shocks you every time you lie.

    “Hey, look at the the Niners owners..they’re as bad as Al Davi..bzzzzzzzzzzzt Aaaaaaaaaaagggggggggh!!”

  • Try Some Reality


  • Norco Bob

    As far as bay area owners go,..the worst has to be eddie D,..I cant think of another one that the league kicked out and made him give the team his daddy gave him to his baby sister,…and now eddie D has to get Goodells permission to attend a Niner game,…pretty bad,…but I predict he will own a team again,..in L.A.,…you can be a felon in L.A.,..dont matter….by the way, that waitress he assaulted in san mateo is still a millionaire, 2o years later.