Tom Cable Picks the Wrong Poison: Frye Stinks, Raiders Sink


Photo: Tony Dejak / AP

Charlie Frye is who we thought he was.

Blame the officials all you want Raider Nation. That pathetic 23-9 loss in Cleveland falls squarely on the shoulders of Tom Cable and his selfish desire to cut off his nose in order to spite his face.

Despite a vintage penalty plagued afternoon, this game was still very winnable. At least in theory it was.

I’m going to go on the record right now: If Charlie Frye starts against the Baltimore Ravens next week, there is a 100% chance that the Raiders will succumb to their 7th straight season of 11 losses.

Maybe my memory is a little fuzzy here, but I could have sworn that JaMarcus Russell led this team to victory in Denver last week. The Frye Guy has yet to find the end zone in 2009, let alone notch a “W” of any kind as a Raider.

Remind me again how he gives this team a better chance to win than JaMarcus.

Why Cable chose to call twice as many passing plays as runs is beyond confusing. It is down right stupid. By repeatedly putting the game in the hands of Frye, Cable put his selfish arrogance ahead of the team.

All year long this has been the problem.

Why did it take Cable so long to bench Russell for Bruce Gradkowski? Despite not producing at all, why was Darrius Heyward-Bey given more snaps than any other wide receiver on the roster for the bulk of the season? Why was Michael Bush buried on the depth chart when he is so clearly the best running back on the team? Why was Frye given the starting job ahead of Russell when JaMarcus clearly gives his team a better chance at victory than Frye?

Frye might be out working Russell in practice, but since when did Cable actually give the starting job to the hardest worker?

Cable is, by far, the best coach to patrol the Oakland sideline since Jon Gruden. That’s not saying much but it is true. Bill Callahan and Art Shell never owned the locker room like Cable does. Norv Turner and Lane Kiffin never had the stones to make the tough decisions Cable does.

Despite that, Cable still has not figured out just how to keep his team motivated week-in and week-out. He’ll have his guys up for the big boys of the NFL but he consistently allows his team to play down to the little guys in the league.

So confident in Frye was Cable, that he called a ridiculous four consecutive passes on the Cleveland two yard line. Not one of them found the end zone and one was intercepted, only to be reversed by review.

Say whatever you want about Russell, but he has something that can’t be taught. Something that appeared late in games against San Diego, Kansas City and Denver. Something Charlie Frye will never have.

I now fully realize that Cable is in fact not being instructed by Al Davis. Davis values production over percentages, whereas as Cable is the exact opposite. Frye might be more accurate than Russell but what good is that if his QB rating is worse than Russell’s?

Would the Raiders have won this game if Russell was the starter? Maybe not.

It was John Marshall’s defense who allowed Jermome Harrison to tote the rock a frachise record 39 times for 148 yards. It was Richard Seymour, Stanford Routt and Chris Morris who committed hideous penalties that cost their team dearly.

However, there is little doubt in my mind that Russell would have given his team a better chance at victory. Not even Charile Frye would argue that. In fact, he’s pretty much already said so in his own words.

“I did not give our team a very good chance of winning. Turnovers trump everything.”


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Tags: Al Davis, Oakland Raiders, Raider Nation, Fans, Popular, Featured Art Shell Bill Callahan Bruce Gradkowski Charlie Frye Chris Morris Darrius Heyward-Bey JaMarcus Russell Jerome Harrison John Marshall Jon Gruden Lane Kiffin Michael Bush Norv Turner Richard Seymour Stanford Routt Tom Cable

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