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Camp questions: Can less be more for Cable?

By Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer
Monday, July 19th, 2010 at 10:48 am in Oakland Raiders.

With players scheduled to report in 10 days, the seventh in a series of questions and issues to be sorted out at training camp in Napa:

Can less be more for Tom Cable?

It was a different Tom Cable that emerged from the speculation on his job status following a 5-11 season and the unwanted publicity stemming from allegations of assault from an assistant coach and domestic abuse by ESPN.

In the end, no charges were filed in the Randy Hanson affair, and the NFL didn’t deem the ESPN revelations worthy of even a slap on the wrist.

Common sense says Cable’s status was tenuous. He is, after all, 9-19 as a head coach and his boss is Al Davis. And while the Raiders displayed plenty of fight on some Sundays, there were those inexplicable blowouts and no-shows, the blame for which eventually fell more on the shoulders of JaMarcus Russell than the head coach.

Cable was not only happily stripped of Russell, but relinquished many of his coaching hats as well.

By nature, Cable concedes he is one of those coaches who when confronted with a problem, is more comfortable rolling up his sleeves and taking care of it himself rather than delegating a subordinate for the repair.

Following the firing of Lane Kiffin, when the offense struggled under Greg Knapp, Cable took over the duties of play-caller. Last season, Cable added the title of offensive coordinator and still called plays, with Ted Tollner coming in as “passing game coordinator” and Paul Hackett as quarterbacks coach.

When the offensive line struggled, Cable stepped in during drills and meetings and took over, with line coach Jim Michalczik looking like a lost spectator wearing Raiders gear.

Following the season, when talking to the media, Cable admitted he had overextended himself, and it’s clear that in making his case to return, sold the boss on the idea that less would be more.

When the Raiders returned to public view, the dominant voice during minicamp and OTA sessions open to the media was offensive coordinator Hue Jackson, who will be the new play-caller and be responsible for the direction of the offense.

Michalczik ran the drills with the offensive line and handled most of the instruction, with Jackson stepping in as well as the coordinator will include some power blocking schemes to go along with Cable’s zone concepts. This is significant, because Cable resisted any suggestion of changing the blocking in the past.

The Cable that emerged from last season and Hansongate has been more, ahem, “hands off.” He goes from unit to unit, pulling a small notebook out to jot down a few ideas, and he addresses the team en masse following practice. But he hasn’t been nearly the imposing and vocal presence which took over for Kiffin and looked to overpower the job through force of will.

He said he loves the new arrangement, which allows him to look at things in a different way and explore new ideas.

The trick is to remain an authority figure and have control of the locker room _ something Cable has done surprisingly well despite a unique environment which has seen other coaches throw up their hands in frustration _ while at the same time taking a step back in terms of the on-field coaching.

Previous camp questions:

Can the starting linebackers hold up in coverage?

How good is Mike Mitchell?

Can Mario be super?

Can Higgins return to ’08 form?

Where is Seymour’s ripple effect?

Can Bush be a beast?

RAIDERS, MAKE-A-WISH AND JAILEN COOPER

Check out the ESPN feature on the visit of 10-year-old Jailen Cooper.

It was filmed on May 26 at an OTA session open to the media, with the Raiders going above and beyond the call to make Cooper and his mother Jessie feel special. The day culiminated with Cooper making a “tackle” of his favorite player, running back Darren McFadden.

By the way, at the end of the film clip, that was me asking Cooper if he hurt McFadden with his tackle.

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  • RaiderRockstar

    1st!

  • RaiderRockstar

    The day culiminated with Cooper making a “tackle” of his favorite player, running back Darren McFadden.

    ***

    when does Dakota get to tackle DMAC ???

  • http://www.blogcdn.com/www.fanhouse.com/media/2008/04/desmond-howard-425-sm.jpg Bo Schembechler Jackson

    By the way, at the end of the film clip, that was me asking Cooper if he hurt McFadden with his tackle.

    :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    And the kid said, “I dunno sir. He fell down before I got near him.”

  • M Lonetree

    less Cable jumpstarts the future. yes!

    Rockstar,

    perhaps your heroine will visit with y’all in Podunk. And maybe you can get yerself some “refudiatin’” with Ms Sarah at the E-Z Motel.

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    Less Cable = More Wins

    Looks like I should even drop the Assistant O-Line coach from Cable’s title….he is now just the Time Out Coordinator!

  • Just Fire Baby

    Tom Cable will be a better coach without Jamarcus Russell.

  • http://www.blogcdn.com/www.fanhouse.com/media/2008/04/desmond-howard-425-sm.jpg Bo Schembechler Jackson

    Dakota Says:
    July 19th, 2010 at 11:42 am
    Go F yourself Elboocho and then go try and moderate a different blog azzwipe.

    :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    LMAO.

  • HairyBush

    RaiderRockstar Says:
    July 18th, 2010 at 12:18 pm
    looking for a fantasy football league to join ???

    Go to yahoo fantasy football and do the following.

    League is: OaklandRaiderFansOnly
    League Number is #162070
    Live draft: September 4, 2010 10:00AM PST

    password: aldavis (one word. lower caps)
    ——————————–

    Do u guys pitch in prize $$?

  • http://www.blogcdn.com/www.fanhouse.com/media/2008/04/desmond-howard-425-sm.jpg Bo Schembechler Jackson

    McFadden took Jailen to the locker room, where Jailen found out that he had a locker of his very own, complete with jerseys, T-shirts, gym bags, backpacks and a real Raiders helmet signed by every player on the team. At 22 years old, McFadden is still a big kid. He threw in some special gifts he got just for Jailen — gospel CDs, a remote control spider to “scare his sister” and a night light. He also gave Jailen some brand new cleats.

    :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    New cleats from DMAC? Isn’t that like Jamarcus giving him Nodoz?

  • RaiderRockstar

    Do u guys pitch in prize $$?

    ***

    HairyBush: not in my league … not sure about Dells

    my league is full btw, did you get in ???

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    You didn’t hear Rockstar? $200 per team manager in Dell’s league….always read the fine print!

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    Send the money to:

    Dakota
    C/O Lakota
    PO Box 699
    Hot Springs, SD 57747

  • HairyBush

    RaiderRockstar Says:
    July 19th, 2010 at 11:55 am
    Do u guys pitch in prize $$?

    ***

    HairyBush: not in my league … not sure about Dells

    my league is full btw, did you get in ???
    —————————
    unfortunetly I was to late, maybe next year.
    I would like to do a yahoo league with people from this blog at about 75$ a head next year.

  • RaiderRockstar

    You didn’t hear Rockstar? $200 per team manager in Dell’s league….always read the fine print!

    Send the money to:

    Dakota
    C/O Lakota
    PO Box 699
    Hot Springs, SD 57747

    ***

    I’m gonna be like Tiger Woods and PULL OUT

  • http://Noknuckleheads! 909RaiderLifer

    The reason Cable keeps his authority and control of the locker room is, the players know he has a mean right cross, and isn’t afraid to use it….

  • RaiderRockstar

    I would like to do a yahoo league with people from this blog at about 75$ a head next year.

    ***

    would you accept one of these instead?

    http://crockettcoonskincaps.tripod.com/coonface2.jpg

  • elboocho

    ohhh touched that crazy reactionary nerve did I lol, your too easy, but I do apologize for giving he too much credit!!

  • HairyBush

    RaiderRockstar Says:
    July 19th, 2010 at 12:05 pm
    I would like to do a yahoo league with people from this blog at about 75$ a head next year.

    ***

    would you accept one of these instead?

    http://crockettcoonskincaps.tripod.com/coonface2.jpg
    ————————–
    fair enough lol

  • http://Noknuckleheads! 909RaiderLifer

    I know it’s not funny that L.A.’s Mayor Tony Villar broke his elbow after being cut off by a taxi, and falling off his bicycle over the weekend, but LMFAO!!!

  • HairyBush

    good story for those of you who haven’t seen this-http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/featu…ory?id=5386827

  • elboocho

    lol jab, sorry for that one too rock!!

  • elboocho

    you make it hard Bo you make it hard!!

  • Just Fire Baby

    2010 is going to be a referendum on purple drank sipping QB’s.

  • M Lonetree

    I refudiate the first round of the 2008 NFL draft.

  • RaiderRockstar

    2010 is going to be a referendum on purple drank sipping QB’s.

    ***

    LOL – Agreed

  • M Lonetree

    Next thing you know Sarah Shakespeare will declare that “there’s something rotten in Denmark”. Which afterall she can see from her house since Vitus Bering was a Dane in Russian employ. Irrefudiatable evidence!

  • http://www.blogcdn.com/www.fanhouse.com/media/2008/04/desmond-howard-425-sm.jpg Bo Schembechler Jackson

    M Lonetree Says:
    July 19th, 2010 at 12:23 pm
    I refudiate the first round of the 2008 NFL draft.

    ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    Just preach baby!

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    July 19th, 2010 at 12:27 pm
    M Lonetree Says:
    July 19th, 2010 at 12:23 pm
    I refudiate the first round of the 2008 NFL draft.
    +++++++++++++

    You will RUEgret the day you said that!

  • Nnamdi21

    Cable!

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    Nnamdi21 Says:
    July 19th, 2010 at 12:34 pm
    Cable!

    SUCKS

  • RaiderRockstar

    Cable!

    ***

    Who ???

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    RaiderRockstar Says:
    July 19th, 2010 at 12:40 pm
    Cable!

    ***

    Who ???
    +++++++++++

    The fat guy that Al emasculated this offseason….you know, the Timeout Coordinator!

  • RaiderRockstar

    Sources confirmed a Cleveland Plain Dealer report that Minnesota is shopping guard Ramon Sessions (due $3.96 million next season) and forward Kosta Koufos (due $1.3 million), and the Cavaliers have interest in both. Sources said a deal with Cleveland could result in guard Delonte West going to the Timberwolves and then being waived since West’s $4.6 million contract has only $500,000 of it guaranteed if he’s waived by August 5.

    Sources also named Cleveland as among the teams interested in free-agent guard Flip Murray. Murray is also said to be receiving interest from the Clippers and Chicago, which he played for last season.

    And Mark Bartelstein, the agent for Lakers guard Shannon Brown, said by phone he’s still talking with the Lakers about a possible return. But nothing is close enough yet to assure that.

    http://www.insidehoops.com/nba_rumors.shtml

  • RNOraiderFan

    If the Raiders start winning this year will it be because…
    Cable
    Jackson
    Players
    Al
    ????????????????????????

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    Disclaimer: I DO NOT WISH AL DEAD, THIS IS ONLY FRIENDLY ADVICE:
    If you are going to kick the bucket, 2010 is the year to do it for owners of a sports franchise or for anyone else with a ton of wealth for that matter….no federal estate tax in 2010. The Steinbrenners just scored big-time savings! George’s estate is estimated to be worth about $1.1 billion and he saved nearly $500 million in taxes by kicking the can in 2010 (of course it may cost a little more in Capital Gains taxes, but not nearly $500 million).

    I am looking at you Al, still a lot of time left for a wise estate planning strategy for 2010.

    I would also just point out the Oregon Death with Dignity Act….might come in handy with your estate planning objectives!

    Always nice to save some money!

  • RaiderRockstar

    Amid speculation that Dwyane Wade could end up playing more point guard, Wade said Sunday that he expects to continue starting at shooting guard – not point guard – and that point guard is “Mario Chalmers’ job to lose.” Wade expects the Heat to start a traditional point guard: “I think that would be the plan. I would like to play [shooting guard].”

    At times, the Heat likely will use a lineup with Wade handling point guard duties and playing alongside starting small forward LeBron James, swingman Mike Miller and two power rotation players. But Wade does not expect that lineup to start games, meaning Miller would come off the bench.

    Carlos Arroyo, who is expected to re-sign, ended last season as the Heat’s starting point guard and will challenge Chalmers for the job. It’s possible another point guard could be added.

    Chalmers, on crutches because of a sprained ankle sustained in a pickup game last week, said he expects to be able to resume playing “hopefully within the next month.”

    http://www.insidehoops.com/nba_rumors.shtml

    ***

    and so it begins …

    sign Allen Iverson to play PG right now!

  • elboocho

    @ghost87.. I do have a reply to that but then I would just be continuing what I want to end on this site/blog, but you go ahead and have the last word if that makes you feel good.

  • JLofty

    Good blog post.
    I think Hue Jackson will be a big addition to the team this year. He and Campbell are going to be night and day compared to some of the year’s past.
    Glad to hear Cable learning to be the HC. You got to get good coaches/managers in place and let them do their job.
    Anyone who has ever managed a job/project/etc. knows you cannot be effective until you learn to delegate. Of course you better have decent hiring/selection skills.

    Do you believe Cable, Al and the Raiders staff can assemble a serviceable OLine this year? Seems like success (real success – not just not sucking) hinges on this….

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