NOTE: Both ESPN and CSN-Bay Area have reported Hue Jackson is interviewing with the 49ers today, which means he was not immediately rubber-stamped as the Raiders head coach. My understanding is that Jackson, however, expects to be talking with Raiders owner Al Davis very soon.
In contrast to some teammates who are upset over the decision to change coaches, Jason Campbell sounded cool and detached Wednesday morning when analyzing the demise of Tom Cable.
Campbell, a guest on SiriusXM’s “Mad Dog Radio,” said he learned late last night via text messages from teammates that Cable had not been renewed.
“I think it probably came down to the relationship between Mr. Davis and coach Cable, and their view on things and how they saw things,” Campbell said. “I didn’t really get a chance to see that, because I was always in offensive meetings and I got there late in the offseason so I really didn’t get a chance to be around coach Cable a whole lot one-on-one and be around Mr. Davis one-on-one.
“Most of my focus was on the field and being around the young guys. The decision was made and I’m pretty sure it just came down to Mr. Davis and coach Cable and they probably sat down and talked about it, and that’s where they went.”
Considering Cable was on a Sirius show a short time before the announcement and was hopeful of keeping his job, the conversation couldn’t have amounted to much other than a “Thanks, but no thanks” message either to Cable or his agent.
During that show, Cable spoke of Campbell’s development over the course of the season and in his final press briefing suggested benching him for Bruce Gradkowski actually helped in terms of his play. Yet at the same time, Cable made it clear Campbell wasn’t a quarterback who could carry a game on his shoulders without the kind of support he received when the Raiders were running well.
“The quarterback position here is solid,” Cable said. “You’ve got to be wise enough to understand what it takes for them to succeed. To me, it’s a run game. We’re going to throw the ball vertical here. Our play-action game allows us to do that.
“So we need a good manager at quarterback. No question Jason proved in the last six weeks of the season that he has command of what we’re asking him to do, and he’s able to control it and lead this team. As long as you do the things around him, meaning run the football, run the football, run the football, and let him explode with deep passes, we have a chance because we certainly have some talent at the receivers position.”
When Campbell was benched for the first time at halftime of a Week 2 win over St. Louis, Jackson said the switch was made at his recommendation. Following the season-ending win in Kansas City, however, he spoke his developing relationship with Jackson as a coordinator.
“Most definitely we have a better feel for each other,” Campbell said. “You don’t just come in out o the middle of nowhere and somehow light it up. It takes time to get to know each other, to know my strengths and what I can do well and what I need to work on.”
During his last press session with beat writers heading into the Chiefs game, Jackson said he was impressed with Campbell’s development as a quarterback who can do more than drop back and deliver.
“I think Jason is a young man who can stand in the pocket and throw it and obviously has the ability to move around and throw the ball,” Jackson said. “I am surprised by his mobility to make plays outside the pocket. He’s done it, but not to the extent that he’s doing it now. He’s really done a good job. He really has. I think Jason has really grown into this role for our football team. Im very excited about his future and what he can be in 2011.”