Raiders interview potential assistants
ALAMEDA – Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis has started interviewing potential assistants for next season even while he continues to mull the fate of coach Tom Cable.
ESPN.com reported the Raiders interviewed Baltimore Ravens quarterbacks coach Hue Jackson about becoming the team’s offensive coordinator.
NFL.com reported the team interviewed recently fired New York Giants defensive line coach Mike Waufle, who held the same position in Oakland in 1998-2003, to replace Dwaine Board as line coach for the Raiders.
“A lot of people have called inquiring about coaching positions,” senior executive John Herrera said.
Both Jackson and Waufle worked on the staff at California with Cable in the 1990s, and Jackson was offensive coordinator at Southern California under current Raiders quarterbacks coach Paul Hackett.
Herrera denied a report in the San Francisco Chronicle that Davis has interviewed Jim Fassel and Marc Trestman as potential coaching candidates.
Fassel and Trestman are former Raiders assistants who have been mentioned as possible successors to Cable if he is indeed fired. Fassel, whose son John is special teams coordinator in Oakland, was an assistant with the Raiders in 1995 and led Las Vegas to the inaugural UFL championship last season.
Fassel told SIRIUS XM Radio that he has not interviewed for the job.
“I think if a coach is in place you don’t start calling somebody and seeing if the job is open or not,” Fassel said. “Tom Cable is the coach. … I follow the Raiders pretty closely because my son is coaching there and I coached there at one time. But, no, I’m not lobbying for any job. I’m not lobbying for the Raider job. I have never in my life rooted for a coach to be let go so there’s an opening. I never have. I’m in the same fraternity. I just got my nose to the grindstone. I’m down here in Vegas working on getting situated down here and that’s where I am. Nobody’s reached out to me.”
Trestman, who was offensive coordinator in Oakland in 2002-03, has spent the past two seasons coaching the Montreal Alouettes in the Canadian Football League. He took the Alouettes to the Grey Cup final in his first season and won it this past year.
Cable’s status is in question after he went 5-11 in his first full season as coach and failed to develop JaMarcus Russell into a legitimate NFL quarterback. Cable is 9-19 since replacing Lane Kiffin early in the 2008 season, leading the Raiders to their NFL-worst seventh straight season with at least 11 losses.
Cable has pointed to the team’s improvement after Russell’s midseason benching as proof that he deserves another year to get the Raiders back to the playoffs.
Herrera said Davis and Cable have talked extensively since the season ended, with many of those discussions coming by phone.
“Most of the characterizations of Al Davis’ meetings with the head coach being short or brief are not true either,” Herrera said. “Mr. Davis has had meetings of some depth with the head coach. There have been meetings and meetings of substance.”