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Oakland's difference makers: Coaches Waufle & Jackson

Mike Waufle and Hue Jackson had major positive impact on the Raiders 2010 season.

Waufle came to Oakland around this time last year and went to work improving the Defensive Line -  which is arguably the most exciting aspect of the Raider Defense.  The Raiders Defense moved way up from its No. 26 Overall ranking in 2009 to No. 11 in 2010  ...  a tremendous gain with much of the credit going to Mike Waufle.  


The Raiders nearly won the Sack Title, finishing 2nd in the NFL (behind only Pittsburgh) with 47 sacks (cf. 11th place in 2009 with 37 sacks).


As a direct product of the Raiders' fierce pass rush, Oakland finished 2nd in the NFL in Defense against the Pass.


If any coach might challenge Mike Waufle for most impact on the Raiders this season, that coach would be OC Hue Jackson. Hue arrived in Oakland around the same time as Waufle and his presence became immediately felt; Hue was vocal, challenging and charming, always energizing. Hue helped Oakland control TOP which in turn kept Waule's DL (& LBs) fresh.


With Hue Jackson calling the plays, the Raiders Offense soared - doubling its points per game from 2009 (when the Raiders Offense ranked 31st in scoring). Under Hue's guidance, the Raiders moved up in rankings to No. 6 in scoring. 

Jackson quickly appreciated the wealth of running back talent (reminiscent of the extravagant days of Bo Jackson and Marcus Allen in the same backfield). Hue returned the Raiders to their roots with a run-first smash-mouth style,  exploiting our talented thoroughbreds (McFadden, Bush, Reece, Ford) while bringing out the best in our pass rush challenged OL, employing them more in doing what they do best - rush blocking and blocking downfield. Notwithstanding, the pass protection did improve somewhat with the development of our sensational rookie, Jared Veldheer, Robert Gallery staying healthy and an improved, tougher and rangier C, Samson Satelle.     


The Raiders overall Offensive finished the 2010 regular season ranked #10 in the NFL (up from #31 in 2009).

Oakland's Rushing Offense was the 2nd best in the NFL - behind only K.C. (a team Oakland out rushed in both its victorious meetings). 

How much of this year's success was directly due to Mike and Hue?  Another aspect was their input in personnel decisions. If Mike Waufle hadn't become a Raider (again) would we have taken LaMarr Houston in the 2nd Round or traded Gerard Warren and brought in John Henderson? Would Kamerion Wimbley have resurrected his college Sack Master mentality without Mike's constant tutoring? Would we have brought in Jason Campbell (who although starting horrifically, gradually emerged with Hue's guidance into a rather serviceable QB). One thing is certain, the quality and sanity of plays called this season was 87.5% better than in 2009 ... the exceptions being the SF and Pittsburgh games, reminding us that Hue is human.


Anyway, I am very grateful that Al Davis hired these men who I consider valuable assets and nominate jointly for Coach of the Year.