Tom Cable Deserved Better from the Oakland Raiders

"The Raiders express gratitude to Tom Cable for his contributions in his four seasons as an assistant and as head coach of the silver and black."

With these words, Tom Cable was gone as head coach of the Oakland Raiders. No tearful farewell from the owner for Coach Cable's unstinting endeavours to turn around the failing Raiders. No immediate replacement for the players or fans to get excited about. Just a drab statement posted on the website.

As a Raider fan, I understand the disappointment in missing out on the playoffs. I even understand that this team may have underperformed in 2010, but what I don't understand is why make this decision now?

It appeared that Cable was the right man at the right time for Oakland when Lane Kiffin left the Raiders in a mess. Cable had no experience of being a head coach and has been surrounded by inexperienced coaches and a very young raw team.

Al Davis could have gone for a more experienced, "big name" coach and looked at turning things around quicker. But it seemed loyalty and steady progress was what was required. The Raiders finished 2008 with a 4-12 record.

In his first full season (2009) as head coach, Cable posted a slightly improved 5-11 and lessons were clearly being learned. The team was growing.

Hiring a play-calling offensive coordinator, Hue Jackson, following the 2009 season was a key building block to allow Cable to become a more rounded head coach. Showing JaMarcus Russell the exit also removed a handicap to progress for the silver and black.

With Hue Jackson getting the best out of Darren McFadden and the best draft class in years, the 2010 Raiders have flashed brilliance, going 6-0 in the AFC West. Coach Cable clearly had the Raiders playing hard for him and there was improvement in almost every department.

After the 8-8 season, there was no feeling of unbounded euphoria amongst Raider Nation; this...

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