The Raider Rumor Carousel continues to spin, causing constant nausea among Raider Nation and turning journalists into dogs chasing their own tails.
Tom Cable will be fired.
Al Davis is interviewing replacements.
No, wait. Forget all that…
Tom Cable will remain as head coach in 2010.
Adam Schefter was among the first to report Cable would be fired. Now he is among the first to report Cable will be retained.
Who knows what the truth is? Only Al Davis does.
If the rumors of Cable’s job retention are true, then I have but one request of Mr. Davis: Give Cable all of 2010 as the head coach.
No matter how things begin in 2010, Cable and the entire team need a coach who has the backing of the organization and not another Lame Duck Lane Kiffin situation. Continuity is a good thing and for a franchise struggling to stay one step ahead of the Detroit Lions.
While the Raiders boast a wealth of young talent with some solid veteran leaders on the roster, there is still a great need to rebuild the once heralded “Raider Way”. Talent alone does not win in the modern NFL. Talented players who have confidence in themselves, their coaching staff and their organization do win more often then they lose or they at least give maximal effort everyday.
There is no full proof recipe for success but there certainly is a blueprint for guaranteed failure.
Keeping Cable in the fold does not guarantee success but it gives this franchise its best chance to improve in 2010. No other coach – not even guys named Lombardi, Gruden or Harbaugh – would have been able to reverse this losing cycle in one year. Every coach needs time to implement their ideologies. Considering all the turmoil that followed Cable this past season and to still have the support of the locker room says a lot about his ability to motivate.
That being said, keeping Cable is only half of the battle.
The other half is to continually support him throughout the season. Even if this team has a record below .500 at the mid-point, he still must be allowed to finish the season. Eight weeks do not tell the story of an entire season, just ask Jeff Fisher about that in 2009. Changing coaches again mid-season will only further compound the problems that plague this once proud franchise. Davis might not be happy with Cable, but his players are. At this point in time, that is a victory. Albeit a small, moral victory but one that has not been prevalent under the regimes of Callahan, Turner and Shell. A victory that cannot be quantified with statistics but will be rewarded with renewed season ticket sales and the smiles that fill the locker room in Oakland.
Rebuilding the Raiders cannot happen in anything short of three years. Three solid years of work by a competent and cohesive staff is not only necessary it is mandatory. Don’t take my word for it, just look at the recent history.
From 1994 to 1997, Davis employed three different head coaches after being unhappy with the state of his beloved team.
Insert Jon Gruden and by the third year of his regime he had this franchise back on top of the AFC West where the Silver and Black would stay for the next three years.
Is Cable comparable to Gruden?
From an X’s and O’s standpoint, the answer is no. Gruden has Cable beat in that category. However, Cable has something Gruden does not. The ability to inspire and lead grown men. Gruden got the most out of his talent but he rubbed many a person the wrong way in the process. While Cable might be a player’s coach, he’s not the type to simply allow his men to walk all over him. He has earned respect the old fashion way through his deeds, his honesty and his never-say-die mentality.
Cable might not have this team back to the pinnacle of the AFC West by the end of 2010, but he will certainly have a team full of men who believe they can get there. In the end, that is all that really matters.
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