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

  • Bob Westerly

    YOU just don’t get it. How can ANY QB lead a team to victory that can’t keep their mouths shut and avoid over 100 yds in penalties? Play calling stunk but so did the Raiders lack of integrity on the field. ANY QB would have to be frustrated with one step forward & 3 steps back every time something good started to happen. Dropped passes that were right on the money, penalties, lack of the run game….. get off Frye’s back!

  • TGrinch

    Heeeeeeyyyy, isn’t thie the same thing that has plagued Russell all year yet he has been whipped by everybody all year. Stay off Frye’s back, what about Russell. You guys are still on his back and he ain’t even playing!

  • dave

    Yes. Russell is the answer. Yes. Sure. Yep.

  • Carl Crawford

    Not one of your better posts this time… You don’t pay people like J-Money, DHB, and DMC to sit on the bench. Eventually Cable saw his job is in jeopardy and had to show AL Davis he can win when he has a mobile QB like Bruce and WR’s like Chaz and Louis. Put Jamarcus Russell in this game you get the same number of picks with 2 fumbles, Frye did an adequate job if you turn those picks into TD’s. It takes J-Money 3 games to pass for 333 yards.

  • Randus

    When was the last time Cable let Jamarcus throw 45 friggin times???!!! 333 yards? 3 TERRIBLE interceptions! Frye should have been pulled and Bush should have got at least one goal-line try!!!! ALL FOUR REALLY

  • Brian Burkhardt

    Chris Shellcroft, the author of this ridiculous piece of journalism, must have Alzheimers. If he thinks Russell should get the nod, I think he needs to make a large pot of coffee and watch a Jamarcus Russell Game Marathon to refresh his memory. This guy is so far beyond Bad, he needs to take spaceship back to Bad. Enough! Let the old Yiddish boy take his lumps (40 MILLION LUMPS) and move on. Cable is trying his best to make chicken salad, but it cannot happen with these QBs. I am for letting JP Losman taking a swing; at least it will be something new.

  • Slam

    Chris’ comments are interesting because I assume the decisions about who starts is made 100% by Al Davis; Chris thinks Cable has the stones to make all these moves. If that’s true then we need to keep this guy.

    I say start JaLardAss Russell against the Ravens only to watch him fail AGAIN and then give him the official heave-ho…I will boo him off the field and hopefully off into the sunset with gusto.

    And I respectfully disagree with Chris about Tom Cable; first of all, what coach worth his salt would come to this depressing hell hole of a football team ?, and for second; we need CONTINUITY; the team needs to hear the same voice two seasons in a row; stop the revolving door.

    If he doesn’t improve, then one year from now we can have this conversation.

  • Chris Shellcroft

    I agree with Slam that Cable should get another year. But that means an entire year. If Davis decides to bring him back then he can’t pull the same crap he did with Kiffin. No more lame duck coaches.

    As far as Frye vs. Russell goes. The numbers don’t lie. Russell has played terrible this year but he has had the taste of victory a few times too. Frye on the other hand has yet to accomplish that. I could care less about how many yards he threw for, what his QB rating is or anything else that stat geeks care about. All that matters is winning. Frye left the game in Denver losing and lost in Cleveland. He has thrown 4 picks, 0 TDs and couldn’t get into the end zone against one of the worst defenses in the league. Good luck with that against Baltimore, Cable.

  • http://[email protected] greg

    I, Dont know what the answer is on QB ?
    What if we had kept Jeff Garcia.
    they didn’t even give him a chance.
    and our defence was terrible yesterday
    the whole team needs to perform better.

  • Mike

    The play calling was horrible, but I want to see how Frye does with a whole week to prep. I think he was still a bit foggy from his concussion a week prior. Russell would have never made it down the field into the endzone.

    It was Cable’s fault to call pass plays when we should have rushed and if he remains we need a true OC.

  • faquaris

    we need to get eric berry in the draft and get the bad boy dog man mike vick