With the Raiders finshing an underwhelming 8-8 for a second year straight and coming up just short of a playoff berth, I'm seeing a lot of the blame for the teams lack of success pointed at head coach Hue Jackson. While I'm certainly of the opinion that Hue should be held accountable for the successes and failures of the team. I feel that Raider Nation, atleast those commenting most fervently on this forum, are being too hard on coach Jackson.
Lets look at what Hue Jackson was able to do as a rookie coach that convinces me he will soon be a great Raiders coach.
Despite the Raiders losing perhaps the best RB in the NFL in Darren McFadden midseason
Despite the Raiders losing their starting quarterback to a season ending injury midseason
Despite the Raiders bringing in a semi-retired QB who hadn't practiced in more than 7 months and throwing him into the starting lineup midseason
Despite the Raiders defense being easier to score upon than a drunk college freshman
Despite the Raiders life blood, architect, and leader Al Davis DYING midseason
Despite having to add General Manager to his already completely full plate of responsibilities
Despite the Raiders becoming the most heavily penalized team in NFL history
Hue Jackson still managed to steer the Raiders close to the playoffs and avoid a losing record as a ROOKIE head coach/game manager. This is a remarkable feat, and I am confident a lesser man would have fallen flat on his face.
Of course all teams have to overcome adversity, but perhaps no 8-8 team has ever had to overcome such a long list of obstacles in their path, much less with a first year leader at the helm.
Raiders fans should applaud Hue Jackson and look forward to what he can accomplish with a stable year.