By Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer
Thursday, January 12th, 2012 at 1:50 pm in Oakland Raiders.
Outside perceptions of Raiders coach Hue Jackson were nicely summed up by two columnists who respect each other but have dramatically different viewpoints regarding his firing.
YahooSports! Mike Silver devoted two days worth of columns on Jackson (links here and here) and the firing that he and Jackson believe came not from general manager Reggie McKenzie, but owner Mark Davis.
Jason Whitlock of Fox Sports.com is of the opinion that Jackson got exactly what he deserved.
Silver bought in on Jackson early on, and considers him a brash and charismatic leader and a gifted play-caller.
Whitlock sees Jackson as a conniver and a schemer, taking on his “subversiveness and selfishness.”
Two independent thinkers who probably agree on a lot of things. Two radically different takes.
They serve as a point and counterpoint and represent the feeling about Jackson throughout the NFL. He’s a bad guy out for himself, or just the man you want to give the organization a jolt of positive energy.
In researching a story on Jackson during training camp, I was struck the loyalty of those who were in his corner as much as I was the silence of a handful of coaches who had worked with Jackson and wanted no part of making a comment on his ascension to a head coaching job.
We saw both sides of Jackson during his two years with the Raiders, bold and brash in a good way but at times too full of himself. Jackson is smart enough and resourceful enough to get another crack at being a head coach, although he’ll probably rethink some of his tactics.
Reggie McKenzie made it clear he has no intention of going into detail on why Jackson isn’t his coach. It seems clear McKenzie talked to enough people with the Whitlock perspective to be uncomfortable with Jackson going forward.