Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Sark Sails Back to Oakland?

I no longer believe anything I read in the media about the Raiders' coaching search, thanks to the utter lack of accuracy, accountability and credible attribution demonstrated to date, so I probably shouldn't reference this late-breaking report from CBS Sports: "The Oakland Raiders brought in Southern California quarterbacks coach Steve Sarkisian for a second interview Wednesday as the team intensified its search for a new head coach."

I guess I'm referencing this rumor (I will no longer call them reports) because it makes me feel better. To be honest, that James Lofton business made me want to reach for the nearest bottle of Colt 45 or Pepto Bismol, whichever was closer. Not that I know much about Sarkisian, either. It's just a gut feeling at this point.

I would also be quite happy with Rob Ryan as head coach, as he is a true Raider and a known quantity. I also like the idea of Mike Martz (53-32 as an NFL head coach), but apparently the Raiders don't.

Back to the reports...I mean, rumors...As I commented earlier, I really wonder: What are the standards here, journalistically speaking? It seems like everyone is quoting unnamed sources, and when what they say doesn't come remotely true, then it's simply, "Oh, well, c'est la vie?"

Look at how Shoop, Martz and Green have been reported with regard to the Raiders job. It's all over the map, which means at least half of these reports are absolutely dead wrong, with little basis in reality. Go to RaiderNews.com and view the past two weeks of conflicting stories for a nice snapshot of this journalistic train wreck. Now we have this James Lofton business, with a San Diego Union-Tribune reporter stating last night: "James Lofton and the Oakland Raiders are working on details of a contract, sources said Tuesday...Lofton could be named the team's coach as soon as Wednesday."

Could? James Lofton could also get abducted by aliens tonight.

I could write that an unnamed source tells me that Mickey Mouse is on the short list of candidates. Does that mean it should be a headline in a major metro newspaper? What about not using unnamed sources in the first place unless you can confirm with a second source, unnamed or otherwise? What about, after watching numerous "reports" already going down the accuracy drain, approaching the matter with heavy skepticism before making any substantive claims about someone being on a short list or being called in for an interview or working out a contract? I wouldn't blame the Raiders (or the NFL or anyone else) for spreading misinformation to serve their own agendas. But I do hold the media accountable for biting the same hook, over and over again.

I should make sure that I don't paint with too broad of a brush by adding that some folks, like Jerry McDonald at the Oakland Tribune, are doing a fine job of separating speculation from fact. Nevertheless, there is a proliferation of misinformation right now that is verging on alarming or asinine, depending on your perspective.

It's one thing to speculate from an opinion standpoint, it's another to "report" the "facts" with the help of allegedly "credible" unnamed sources, only to be proven totally off base. In the real world, that gets you in trouble. In sports, it apparently gets you a pat on the back and "better luck next time" from your editor.

43 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

LOL!
That was hilarious, and summed up everything I'm feeling right now in regards to this coaching search fiasco.

8:19 PM  
Anonymous R2G said...

RT-

Well said! When do we get "The time is now: GM/OWNER"?

9:15 PM  
Blogger PantyRaider said...

RaiderTake:
I have been getting too many "HeadAch"s trying to follow this "Crap" so I decided to "StrikeBack" with comments of my own...so here is the comment I posted for da "Mediot"s-n-their Fans to digest...

6. I don't know enough about JamesLoffton the coach to make an intelegent comment about him as a "HeadCoach"...but I must be impressed if he can sit down with MrDavis and talk X's-n-O's in a way that makes him a ligitamate cannidate...I doubt that very many of us could do likewise...to my knowlege...no "ArmChairQB" has ever been given an opertunity in the NFL...or College for that matter...perhaps not even HighSchool....but keep trying...who knows you might get discovered....kind-a-like the Actress who is always dreaming about stardom...but at the end she is just another "Prettyface"....with a "Mouth" no doubt...and that is all the "Mediot"s are...another "PrettyFace-w-da-Mouth"!!!

http://redskins.aolsportsblog.com/2007/01/17/
james-lofton-about-to-take-the-raiders-
head-coaching-job/

So this is one approach we could take...just an opertunity to explain to the "Madiot"s how stupid they are...and a little fun at the same time...

PantyRaider...PayBacksBitch!!!

9:43 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

Call it blind intuition, a gut instinct, or just old fashioned hope but ...

I get a warm, fuzzy feeling thinking about Sark becoming our HC.

My fingers are crossed that a contract will be worked out in the next 24-48 hours.

Some of the things I really like about Sark:

- He comes highly recommended by Pete Carroll. Carroll has said publicly that Sark is on the fast track in the coaching profession. I would rather take a rising star 1 year early than resort to retreads.

- He seems to be very ambitious, energetic, enthusiastic, and positive by nature. Poor communcication with the players will no longer be an issue.

- Sark has a bright offensive mind having been a successful QB who over-achieved. Plus he was mentored by Norm Chow at USC.

- Sark would seem to the type of HC who could build a very positive working relationship with our QB.

Just look at the final 4 HC/QB relationships ... Belicik/Brady, Dungy/Manning, Payton/Brees, L.Smith/Grossman. All of these relationships are built on trust, respect, and mutual support. In particular look at the way Smith handled things with Grossman by publicly stating his belief in Grossman while Grossman was struggling.

- Last but not least, Sark is from West Torrance, CA which is about 5 minutes from where I live!

Here's hoping that Sark pulls up his anchor and docks in the East Bay.

10:29 PM  
Anonymous raider00 said...

Let's all agree that most of the media are idiots who report the "facts", even though they don't know a thing.

Check out what Bobby Petrino did this week. He named a coaching staff !!!!!!!

Paul Petrino WR coach
Brian Vangorder LB coach
Mike Summers 0-line coach
Keith Rowan TE coach
Derrick Nix offensive asst.
Andy Sugarman offense quality control
Kevin Wolthausen D-line coach
Joe Whitt asst D backs coach
Jon Gannon D quality control
Tom McMahon asst STeams coach
Evan Marcus Strength & conditioning coach


Wow, has this Petrino got nerve or what ??
Imagine naming his entire coaching staff.
What does he think, he's in charge or something ??
I hope this type of thing doesn't catch on around the league.

Next thing you know Freddy B. & Willie B. will be out of jobs, and the Raiders will be headed toward the future.

Outrageous !!!!!!!!!!!

10:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Raider "00" You have hit the NAIL!! That is the entire POINT! All talk about who will be the coach is BS! Let it be Mickey Mouse....If he can pick his own staff and run his own offense......Im good with that! But if anyone comes in and makes little or no changes in the staff......He will be just the Next X-coach of the LOSING Raiders......I need to take an asprin followed by some Pepto........Im out!

10:56 PM  
Anonymous scorpio said...

mickey mouse. how fitting if he would become the head coach of the oakland raiders. i can't think of a better name to reflect what our once proud team has become.

12:00 AM  
Blogger RaiderRealist said...

This whole episode sounds like a "News you can't Use" segment.

1:56 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Does anyone remember from early training camp when Shell was asked to reflect on players’ performances or make general analyses from the previous season, and Shell would simply responded by saying he hadn’t looked at any film, etc? To me, that exemplifies how coaches seem to come here and exist with blinders on.

A new coach worth his salt would have studied his prospective team up and down, and as early as the interview process, he would be able to identify the teams and individual players strengths and weaknesses as well as offer a plan to move forward. That’s exactly what Whisenhunt did to earn his new HC post.

Question: Does anyone really believe the latter process is being undertaken at Raider headquarters?

I just feel like we've been here and done this before!

6:12 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

RT:

You said that in the real world there are consequences. Obviously you've never watched FOX News. In the real world liars get promoted to White House Press Secretary.

But sports have always been this way.

9:08 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

While we're talking assistants, I'd like to ask a question, and I want real analysis for an answer. I don't want to hear, "just look at how so and so played this year, that's all you need to know." That's not analysis, it's a Jim Rome drive by.

I'd like somebody to tell me why you think Freddie Biletnicoff is a crappy WR coach. Why is Willie Brown a crappy DB coach? What is it about how they teach, and what they teach, that is harmful to Raider players and the winning concept?

Don't tell me that they come from an "different era" either. Almost every coach in the freaking NFL played in a "different era." And I'll make it extra tough for you. Don't tell me what some idiot mediot said. Source somebody who has good reason to know.

9:28 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Well, off the top of my head, it's fair to say that the WR position coach is responsible for getting the most out of his receivers by maximizing their potential. This involves a variety of things, including instruction, motivation, etc.

So then we ask the question: are we getting the most out of our wide receivers? Certainly not last year. Porter and Moss certainly weren't motivated, and they did not make the most out of their talent. Morant had the dropsies when he got his chance. Whitted was named a starter for reasons still unknown. Curry was the lone success story, in my opinion.

I don't know if that's Freddy B's fault. Moss and Porter might just be bad apples who are beyond repair. The Whitted decision may not have been his.

But this is where I would begin the analysis that you suggest.

I terms of knowing "for sure" about coaches and the intricacies of their abilities, I think it's impossible. Nobody on the outside knows for sure everything that Bill Belichik is doing, but we know it's working.

For those of us on the outside, results are an essential guidepost.

9:48 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

RT:

So that's the beginning and the end of it isn't it? Are we winning? Are we losing?

Folks forget the context of Davis' statement, "just win, baby." What he meant at the time is that all criticism goes away when you're winning. When you're winning, everbody's a genius. A loser has no allies.

Freddie and Willie were both coaches during our most recent Super Bowl year. Our WRs then were fantastic. Nobody complained about Freddie. What is surprising to me is that with the success of the defense this year (and especially the rise of the DBs), I've heard talk about what a waste of time Willie is. But then the team is losing, no matter how good the defense.

10:02 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

No, I suggested it was the beginning, I don't think I remotely suggested it was the end. I simply said that player performance was a fair starting point for evaluating a coach. Is it not a fair starting point?

We know that Roby Ryan should continue to be our DC (if not our head coach). We also know that Tom Walsh should not be our OC. How do we know this? Not because we're inside the barbed wire watching how they coach on a daily basis. More than anything, we know this because one got the most out of his players, and the other got very little, as evidenced on the field.

That said, I agree that teams have ups and downs, and that good coaches don't turn bad overnight, even if the team suddenly tanks. On the other hand, the best coaches can adapt and motivate a variety of personnel, year in and year out.

I don't pretend to have the type of inside information you seek on this subject. I'm just suggesting that player performance is a legitimate barometer of a coach.

10:17 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

RT:

I agree that performance is a fair barometer. So why do we want Willie gone? Or did Ryan do all of, and the only successful coaching this year? The other defensive coaches had nothing to do with the success of the defense?

The WRs with attitude and personal issues didn't show up this year. Whitted was a bad choice for a starter, sure, but who starts isn't an assistant coach's decision. Freddie turned Curry from a QB to a WR - and I think one of the best. Does he deserve any credit for that?

Neither Moss nor Porter are insufficiently coached or skilled. They can't help but trip over their own sense of self worth. Moss has always pushed for the "Randy ratio," and Porter was a problem for Gruden, Callahan, and Turner, not just Shell and Freddie.

10:30 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Let me also clarify that I've NEVER said Freddie B (or Willie B.) should be dismissed. Others have, but I have not.

I, too, believe that the issues with our receiving corps have more to do with Porter and Moss being bad character apples (which unfortunately begs the question why our executives put the fate of our receiving corps in the hands of two bad character apples).

All I'm stating is that in a pro-Freddie v. con-Freddie debate, the issue of player performance is fair game, for the reasons cited.

10:38 AM  
Blogger raiderdecoachella said...

RT;
I am with you on this particular issue with Freddie, but I do have to say that in my personal opinion if Moss and Porter wouldn't have been playing for the Raiders I do believe that our receiving corps would have done a lot better, I strongly believe that those two clowns made the cituation completely unlivable for the rest of the receiving corps, I also believe that when Shoop was the tight ends coach the tight ends were doing a lot better and Madsen was involved more on the offense.

10:54 AM  
Blogger PantyRaider said...

CalicoJack:
Now that you mention it the last time the Raiders were winners it was durring or after there had been a very good relationship between the HC-OC and the QB...RichGannon...first with Gruden and second when Calihan took over...but that ended when Gannon-n-Tuie went down the following year and we have never had it sence....please forgive me but I just gave a positive about Gruden when I still hate the Bitch...I hate it even more when I start to understand what he may have been up against trying to coach our team with players like Porter getting support...but as we say...the final prouf is in what he has done....drove a Winner into the "Abyss"...TB Sucks...

BlandaRocked-RaiderTake:
Cool takes...I would like to weigh in with a small note...just speculation...

WR AlvisWitted...NOT a great tallent and we can all see that...so there is a "BreakDown" in the WR Core and we need a replacement..."Freddy" get Alvis ready...Yes Sir...I will do my best and he will do his best....and after we analize what Witted and Fredy"B" did could we come to the realization that both did their "Best" with what was a "Negative" situation...

Another look...JohnieMorant looked very good but had a few drops...was he coached well by Fredy"B"...WillBuchanon same question....JohnMadsen...same question...although he is working as a TE he was a WR...

Now for the final and bigest example of all...GougGabrial...NE found him to be so worthless that they just released him and still loose their 5th Rd Pick....but under Fredy"B"s coaching he looked like a very good WR with a future and we were all very sad to see him traded...as I remember...so looking back...how do we come to the conclusion that Fredy"B" is NOT an ExalantWRCoach...

BlandaRocked already stated the example of "Curry" which speaks for itself....or did these "OverAchiever" just decide to coach themselve...

PantyRaider...LikenFreddy"B"!!!

11:43 AM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

BR
As far as the Freddie B and Willie B in/out debate goes, if you can't evaluate how the players performed the past 4 seasons, then you can't evaluate their approval based on prior seasons either. I think it is a combination of things that decide how a coach is doing. One of the things is player performance, another is how they interact with the players, and what the players' opinions are about particular coach. I think all of those things together tells an owner if the coach is good or not.
In the case of Freddie B, I'm with you though, I do not think Freddie B is a horrible coach, based on past WR's performances, and how the players on the team respect him. He is a "players' coach" and they respect him, not only because he played, but he played above and beyond and was a leader of the team at one time.
Tim Brown, James Lofton, Willie Gault, Rocket Ismail, Ron Curry, and the current crew; have all said out-standing things about Freddie B; currently and throughout their respective careers.
Now the Moss/Porter debate involving Freddie B; how can you truly coach a player like Moss who gave up after Week 4, by choice? Look at what was said of Porter, by Art Shell, throughout the season that Porter, "...has done everything that's been asked of him during practices....." Meaning, he listened to his coach (Freddie B). How can anyone blame Freddie B for Art Shell not playing him?
As for Willie Brown? I'm not too sure what the players think of him. I don't know if it was Ryan's defensive guidance, or what Brown is teaching the current DB's on our team, that's made the improvement there. I also don't know what the DB's opinions on WB are either, which is fine by me. Silence says a lot. I think Willie has been effective, if you just base it on the performance of the DB's. It has consistently improved. So, I don't really have an opinion either way.
But to tie people's arms by saying that "you can't evaluate a coach by a players' lack of performance" is wrong. Because that is a part of it, but not the whole of it.
This is a big reason why I didn't like Walsh. There was no performance under him, and the players didn't respect him as a coach. Nor did they respect Art Shell. Why? Because the same wasn't given to the players by either men.

11:45 AM  
Blogger PantyRaider said...

RaiderNate75:
We were both "PostTosties" at the same time but I want to agree with you take...very well thought out...

PantyRaider...PerformanceEvaluation!!!

11:51 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Blandarocked said: “Freddie and Willie were both coaches during our most recent Super Bowl year. Our WRs then were fantastic. Nobody complained about Freddie.”

Our receivers were named Brown and Rice. Their work ethic and professional integrity were unquestioned and quite frankly far removed from Fred Biletnikoff’s coaching ability, so that’s not a fair example, nor is it a reason to give Fred a pass under the present circumstances.

Facts are facts. Our offense was terrible, and our receivers were largely to blame. Instead of pointing a finger at Fred, let me say this:

I can’t pretend that I know if Freddie is a good coach or not. My primary point is that a new HC should be allowed to hire his own assistants and not have them force-fed to him. Isn’t that the norm in the NFL and other professional sports? Shouldn’t the HC be allowed to create a chemistry by hiring assistants of his own design? Instead, we have this propensity of Raider-Family nepotism which, under winning circumstances, nobody would care. But, I see the receiver position as a critical area of the offense which has failed beyond comprehension. So I say to Al, stop making these guys untouchable. LET THE NEW HEAD COACH DECIDE!

12:15 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

The dollars and cents view — Assuming Freddie may have alienated himself from Porter as part of last year’s benching.

If Porter cannot be traded (say, for circumstances beyond control), than a smart businessperson has to ask the question: do I continue to bench (or sanction) Porter in order to satisfy my coach (who I pay a little money), or do I dump my coach to satisfy my player (who I pay a lot of money and can sell tickets for me)?

12:27 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

BlandaRocked: As far as I can tell, both Freddie and Willie seem to be good coaches with a wealth of knowledge. However, I think it is time for new blood. Freddie has been the WR coach the past 14 years. I would like for our new HC to be able to bring in someone he wants on his staff.

For example ... Let's assume Sark is named HC. Wouldn't it be an ideal situation for him to be able to name Lane Kiffen (current WR coach at USC) as his WR coach?

As far as Old Man Willie, he really hasn't been doing the majority of coaching when it comes to the DBs. Last season it was primarily Chuck Pagano not Willie who was ultimately responsible for the DBs perfomance.

Guys like Freddie & Willie can still serve valuable roles within the organization. I just don't like to see a HC's staff dictated to him.

12:46 PM  
Anonymous Gary said...

Like someone else mentioned, the ONLY thing that Al is good at in regards to coaches is identifying hot young inexperienced coaches... if Al has that same sense of greatness now with Sarc, he should just pull the trigger before someone else gobbles him up in a few years with more experience (and he has too much experience to want to put up with Al's eccentricities).

I think ABLILTY is more important than experience in regards to coaching... and just as Raider fans were patient with Gruden as long as we see improvement... we would be patient with Sark as he gains experience.

Plus "Sark" SOUNDS like a Raider nickname.

If Lofton was an offensive guru, why is he still just a WR coach, and it's not like SD has been pumping out all-pro's at WR lately.

I say let's take a chance on Sark, if Son o Buddy (SoB) is not hired.

12:55 PM  
Anonymous Gary said...

As far as Freddie B and Willie, it's kinda like arguing "what if" Al was not the owner... I think they are on the staff as long as they want their jobs, and it is what it is.

Al will never let go of the past... never. He needs these players (one each on offense and defense) to keep connected.

1:03 PM  
Blogger PantyRaider said...

Gary:
I like your approach...and we could also look at Lofton as posible "OC" if he is so good at motivation...the thing about Lofton is he is "50" and not that "Young" up and comming coach like "Sark"...

As for TimmyBrown...who was his WR coach when he was drafted..."88"...that was "18" years ago counting by the season...if Freddy"B" has been coach for "15" years than he was Timmy's coach for most of his carrear...so how do we say that Timmy was far and above Freddy"B"...I think we could see that Timmy became as great as he was partially due to the good coaching he was under...or do you think Timmy and Rice just coached themselves....NOT Likely...

PantyRaider....CorectlyStated!!!

1:14 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Panty, I don't think I was implying Tim Brown is "far and above" Fred. What I meant to imply was that guys like Brownie and Rice are their own coaches, and probably receive (or need) minimal coaching from their position coaches.

So, realistically, what input and coaching could we expect Fred B. to offer Brown and Rice?

Either one of those guys could probably be an OC or even head coach if they wanted to.

3:19 PM  
Blogger PantyRaider said...

NYRaider:
OK...I understand but Timmy was young when he began to be coached by Freddy"B"...that is why I spoke about him...Rice was already an accomplished WR and future "HOF"er when he came to the Raiders so I could not say he became great as a result of his Raider coaches....but he had several years under the coaches of the SadFranchise40Winners to help him develop into the player that he was...

I will disagree with you on one point...that a player coaches himself...this is like a defendant who defends himself....there are just too many things in the game that you don't see from the player position...just like a fighter like "Clay"...Ali....he was still coached as he fought and before a fight in preparation for a fight...as a player you can know your own strengths and weaknesses but not always see what your opponent is doing to you or how to beat him...

Someone outside the game who understands and sees what is taking place is needed to help you see what needs to be done and how to do it...that's the coach....he might not be telling you how to run a rout or catch a ball anymore....but he might tell you that the "CB" is checking the "QB" when you make a cut so make a quick cut and cut back to gain a step while his attention is distracted by the "QB" and you will get separation...that is what coaching is about...in preparation you teach the proper techniques...in the game you relate to the player what is taking place and how he needs to react to it...a coach looks for the little things that a defender is doing and compiles a plan to attack it...some of that is done before the game in the film room but the rest is "GameTime" adjustments....and the other side is doing the same thing...it is like a giant ChessBoard....the players are the pawns and the coaches are the strategist...and so forth...

That is how I saw it when I competed...a player must be willing to listen to his coach...be coach able...but some are not...they think they can see everything and don't need any help....that is their stupidity and it will defeat them....

PantyRaider..Let-the-Coach-be-Your-Eyes!!!!

4:09 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

I know many fans would have been happy if Al just left Shell in place for another year, and simply started handing out pink slips to players (on offense) and sent them on their way.

Now that it’s been decided against Shell, the anticipation of possibly bringing in a new and dynamic offense-minded HC and/or OC has us all excited about the prospect of next year, or at least our near future.

However, even in it’s current mutation, diehard fans have to see that this has the markings of a formula that’s been tried again and again, with many of the same people left behind the scenes to pull and tug “for the good of the system.”

They’re all good-intentioned people, I’m sure, but maybe it’s time to try something else. Let our new coach pick his assistants and develop a chemistry with his staff.

Nobody should misinterpret my comments as not being loyal to the Raiders or their past. I met Willie Brown at a game in NJ and he and Jack Tatum signed a football for me (priceless!), and I’m a lifelong fan of Freddie. That’s not the point here. The point is, it’s time to move forward, and now is our best opportunity, as we bring in a new HC and OC.

Besides, wouldn't those guys rather just sit next to Jim Otto in the owner's box and watch the games?

4:11 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Panty, yeah, two heads are better than one, for sure. But even coaches can become complacent. 15 or 17 years (whatever it is) is a long time to hold one post.

Even more curious, wasn’t there any opportunity for Freddie to climb the coaching ladder, or even coach for another team (not that it would be an option he would have taken)? Did he just plateau after his first year, then stick with it for another 16?

Calico suggested we need "new blood." I think we at least need a blood transfusion at WR coach.

4:20 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Freddie came up last year after Green's interview. (As a side note, I've seen a lot of the media say that Green refused to meet with Davis, meaning he didn't want the job. I read that Green's agent actually said that Green has interviewed with Al so many times that he just didn't think another interview would mean anything. But he'd take the job if simply given an offer.)

Green questioned Freddie being on the staff by way of saying that he wanted coaches with their own ambitions - who wanted to be HCs themselves. He didn't want Freddie because he thought Freddie's lack of ambition would be an excuse not to perform. What I've heard from the Raiders' organization is that Freddie is just very happy doing what he's doing. He loves the organization, working with the players, and the opportunity to focus still on the thing he's done the best in life.

There is validity to Green's opinion. I don't entirely share it. It depends on the person, and I believe that Freddie still delivers quality work.

There is also validity to the idea that an HC may want position coaches who will buy into a specific philosophy and get the most out of players in the context of that philosophy.

Ultimately, where I come down, is that it's going to depend on the HC. If the HC feels that he'd do better without Freddie, then he should be able to find the coach of his choice. However, don't ignore the possibility that whatever HC comes in may, in fact, prefer Freddie over anyone else.

4:43 PM  
Anonymous raider00 said...

Blandarocked,

Here's my 2 cents.

My point was if Bobby Petrino, or any other qualified HC candidate, is sitting in Al's office talking deal, and the subject of asst. coaches comes up, and Petrino wants his guys, but Al insists on keeping some of his guys, and that causes the deal to fall apart, leading to hiring coaches like Turner, & Shell, well, that's not a good thing IMO.

I am not an insider, so I do not know what really goes on behind the closed doors, but I wonder...

Why would Payton choose NO over the Raiders ?

Why would Petrino choose Atl. over the Raiders ?

Why would Whisenhunt choose Arz. over the Raiders ?

So the question to me is not, is Freddy B. or Willie B. good coaches ?
The question is, are they standing in the way of hiring a top flight HC ??

It's a question I think is worth asking as we have struggled to find the right man for the job, since Gruden bounced.

4:49 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

raider00:

It's a very fair question. I look at it this way. If I'm Al Davis, I want to keep tradition on my team. The best way to do that is to insure that some coaches come from the Raider family.

If I'm meeting with a prospective HC, who tells me that he wants to bring in all of his own people, I know that I can move those people to non-coaching roles, but to positions that will still impact the way the players view the team's history. I'm going to ask myself, "Do I want the HC, or do I want the assistants in their current positions?"

I suspect that the reason we haven't gotten certain coaches is because Al didn't feel strongly enough about them. As for Payton, he was prepared to accept the offer from the Raiders, but Parcells and Jones talked him out of it so that he'd stay on in Dallas. Parcells and Jones are two of Al's best friends, so they weren't trying to screw Al. They were protecting their own interests. Payton took the NO job because Davis didn't offer one to him the next time around.

As for Weisenhunt, I think he stayed because he knew he had a good shot at the HC spot in Pit. He didn't decline the interview because just being interviewed for an HC increases your value. There is a lot to be said for being patient and not having to move your family 3,000 miles.

As for Patrino, Al's wasn't the only offer he turned down. Other teams made inquiries, but he said that he intended to honor his current contract. He may have lied to Al, but he lied to everybody.

My position is that I think the "assistants" controversy is largely made up by the media. I'm not saying that issue doesn't exist, but I don't realy think that it impacts what coaches the Raiders are able to hire.

5:24 PM  
Blogger East Coast Raider said...

I think Calico makes a great point above:

"Just look at the final 4 HC/QB relationships ... Belicik/Brady, Dungy/Manning, Payton/Brees, L.Smith/Grossman. All of these relationships are built on trust, respect, and mutual support."

This is WAY under-rated.

So if Sark has a way of conversing w/ or relating to QBs that gains their trust, then maybe he's the guy we need. As long as we can keep Ryan on board. Or maybe Ryan as HC and Sark as OC? Either way, let's get some karma going between the coaching staff and the QB so that when they are conferring on the sidelines during a crucial timeout, we all don't sit there wondering what the $#*! they could be talking about, or whether either one is actually listening to the other!!!

Then we can go to work on QB-WR karma...

5:29 PM  
Anonymous raider00 said...

I really can't see what Freddy B, & Willie B., as asst. coaches has to do with Raider tradition ?

The tradition of the Raiders, as I recall, was to have the greatest players, the greatest coaches, and to play in the greatest games. Al Davis has said as much.

This is the only tradition that I, as a fan, am interested in keeping alive.

Nothing will ever erase the amazing memories I have of Fred Biletnikoff, & Willie Brown, as players.
But I really don't have any memories of them as coaches, to tell you the truth.

Conversely, just because Cliff Branch, & Lester Hayes never coached for the Raiders, doesn't mean I consider them any less a part of Raider tradition.

Hire the HC, and let the HC pick his own staff. All of it.

It may not be the Raider way, but it might be the smart way to go now.

6:23 PM  
Blogger PantyRaider said...

NYRaider:
About Freddy"B"...there had been talk about him becoming "OC" until a few years ago when his Daughter was Murdered...after that point I believe he rejected the climbing the ladder thing...he almost retired but stayed because of all the support he received and it is his extended family....so I believe that's another story...too painful to explore....

Just a thought about the assistant coaches...and I am "Speculating" so don't Quote me here....it could be that coaches like Freddy"B"-n-Willie"B" are the ears and eyes of AlDavis...one on each unit that insures the owner is in touch with what is happening on his team....men with impeccable "Loyalty" who could not be persuaded to go against Mr Davis in any way....and is that something so bad....it exist in most large corp.'s....many of us would call it a "Stooly" but if we were the owner what would we do to know what was going on within our organization...install Audio/Video Surveillance...so if a coach insists that he bring in his own people he is not going to get far with MrDavis....and this in fact may have a lot to do with why some will never coach here....but that is fine with me...I don't own the Raiders and my financial input over the past "45" years would not pay 1/10 of a Players salary....

So something to consider...lets dream for a while and say you came into a "Bundle" of money and were able to purchase the Raiders from MrDavis....now you do not have enough knowledge of the NFL to run this business but you are going to take an active hand anyway...what do YOU do...

Maybe after considering all the moves you would make it might change your opinion of MrDavis just a little...so lets start...you have 3 1/2 months to get ready for the draft and you don't have a "HC"...the "FreeAgent" period starts March 1st...there are several trades to make...so lay it out for us...what are your moves and how do you insure that things are run your way.....

PantyRaider...JustListeningBaby!!!

7:40 PM  
Blogger StickUm25 said...

As you can tell from my ID, I'm a huge Freddie fan. The first game my dad took me to was a game against Houston. Lamonica hit him with a bomb for a TD in the north end zone - it came straight at me. Been my favorite player ever since.

I think Freddie has been a good coach. As noted he coached Timmy a good part of his career, and as vocal as Brown has been over his career, if Biletnikoff was a poor coach we surely would have heard about it. I think he maybe got too comfortable with Shell coming in as coach, hence the argument with Porter, and the start of the downfall last year.

I think the question of coaches being forced to keep Freddie is overrated. For the coaches who came in while Brown was around, and the relationship was good, they would have had no problems keeping him around. It's likely only been the last couple of years where it could be considered an issue.

Today, however, I think it would partially hinge on whether we're keeping Porter or not. Disregard what Shell originally said about Porter doing everything asked of him - when Porter was suspended Shell noted something to the effect of "you don't always air your dirty laundry". It was also noted the Porter had yelled at his position coach (i.e. Freddie) and refused to practice. Whether the two of them can get past this is irrelevant - we need to start fresh and this is one of the key decisions that the new coach will make.

BTW - looks like it will be Sark. Jerry is reporting that Kiffin is in town. As noted, Jerry has probably been the only legit guy out there, and his analysis seems spot on.

8:40 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

I totally agree with Raider 00's Branch/Hayes analogy.

Like any profitable, competitive corporation, there is a need for the Raiders organization to be willing to adapt and change to fit the current challenges.

There is a HUGE difference between holding on to the past and honoring the past.

Like most Raider fans, I enjoy going down memory lane. I cherish the great teams, coaches, and players from the past. Why? Because they won.

Does anyone know (or care)who the WR/DB coaches were in the seasons of 1976, 1980, or 1983?

The point being that we should not limit our our choices for HC candidates by holding on to the past and handcuffing the new HC's choices for his staff.

Ultimately job security for players and coaches alike should be based on performance not whether you were a 1st round pick (Brayton), run a 4.4 40 (Whitted), or are in the HOF (Shell, Blitnekof, Brown).

The evaluation of players and coaches should be constant. Certainly upgrading the coaching talent is a big component to the team's future success. Besides the LB Coach (Martindale) and DC (Ryan), who else on this staff is noteworthy?

8:52 PM  
Anonymous Kevin said...

I thought special teams looked pretty good this year, too.

11:30 PM  
Blogger RaiderRealist said...

Check out this article by Paul Attner on Sportingnews.com:


http://www.sportingnews.com/yourturn/viewtopic.php?t=168848

You might agree or disagree, but it will certainly make you think.

2:17 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

PantyRaider said: “So something to consider...lets dream for a while and say you came into a "Bundle" of money and were able to purchase the Raiders from MrDavis....now you do not have enough knowledge of the NFL to run this business but you are going to take an active hand anyway...what do YOU do...”

Panty, first of all, it would take more than money to buy the Raiders from Al Daivs, but I’ll bite. The key word in your hypothetical scenario is “business.” If I’m to take over this business, I will not need an intimate knowledge of football, I will only need good business sense to hire the right executive and administrative staff, scouting staff, and a sound, proven head coach. I will then allow my new proven coach to have autonomy to bring in his own coaching assistants and implement his own system.

Decisions on keeping my coach and other personnel moving forward will be performance-based, not based on tradition.

If my new coach wants to keep Freddie and Willie in place (based on their performances), then so be it. Maybe that’s been the case all along, I don't know. I’m more inclined to believe your (Panty’s) “stool pigeon” theory regarding their amazing tenure as assistant coaches.

6:36 AM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

Kevin -

News Flash: Our Special Teams were horrible last year. In 3 of 4 major Special Teams categories, the Raiders were ranked at or near the bottom of the league:

Kick Coverage (32)
Punt Coverage (30)
Kick Return (31)

6:57 AM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

I still wonder if Sark is really interviewing for the "Head Coaching" vacancy; or if it is for the "OC" vacancy. Neither side has come out and said that these interviews are for the HC. They have said they are for "filling a coaching vacancy," but which?
The Mediots assume that it is for the HC spot, but you should never assume with Al Davis (especially during the draft). EVER!
Remember, he interviewed Al Sanders several times too last season, and the Mediots were saying the same thing, and then he bailed for Washington.
I'm still not sold that Sark is the next HC, despite Kiffin joining him yesterday. He could have been there to interview with Sark, as an assistant that Sark wants to bring in to help him as Assistant Offensive Coordinator.
Either way, I don't think we will know until after the weekend, when Sark and Kiffin return from their recruiting weekend with USC.

7:26 AM  

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