By Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer
Saturday, November 27th, 2010 at 1:04 pm in Oakland Raiders.
A day after profootballtalk.com reported “all signs” were pointing toward Bruce Gradkowski as the Raiders’ starting quarterback against Miami, ESPN’s Adam Schefter, citing a “source close to the situation” is reporting the Raiders plan to start Gradkowski.
UPDATE: Add the NFL Network to the list . . . another “source familiar with the situation” has spoken.
Interesting in that when Jason Campbell came off the field Friday, he was at least pretending to be the starting quarterback, as coach Tom Cable said he would in the aftermath of a 35-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. My understanding is that both quarterbacks got first-team reps this week, although I couldn’t confirm whether it was one-sided for one quarterback or the other.
Cable and Campbell both fielded questions about having a quick hook for the quarterback without ever saying the hook had already been executed.
In theory, the Raiders would produce a quarterback for network production meetings. That information is supposed to be kept private, but if the Raiders had Gradkowski meet with announcers Gus Johnson and Steve Tasker, it’s conceivable someone got wind of it.
If the Raiders are indeed making the switch, you’d think Cable would at least be willing to stand behind it. Surely he doesn’t think a quarterback mind game will give the Raiders any sort of competitive advantage, as if the Miami defense will be hopelessly flummoxed, never imagining the Raiders would switch to Gradkowski as they’ve already done twice this year.
Perhaps it took awhile for Hue Jackson to get Al Davis to sign off on the change. Miami likes to blitz heavily, and Cable noted that Campbell seemed to become undone by the Steelers’ pressure as the game went on, hence the change to Gradkowski.
Maybe the Raiders will issue some sort of confirmation or denial today. More likely, absolute conformation would come from CBS through their production info, either on their pregame show or before the telecast (which is blacked out in the Bay Area).
If you’re playing these kinds of games with the starting quarterback position 10 games into the season, it means you don’t truly have confidence in either one.
Which means they’ll be looking for another quarterback in 2011.
None of which will matter for the time being if the Raiders win and improve to 6-5 in 2010.