Strength and conditioning coach Tom Shaw was one of Oakland Raiders head coach Jon Gruden’s first hires. But it didn’t go right for him as 19 players went on injured reserve this season. Could more moves on his coaching staff be on the way?
Things aren’t looking so good for offensive line coach Tom Cable these days either. He was good in his first stint with the Raiders and early-on with the Seattle Seahawks after that. But he would eventually lose the magic, then his job with to the Seahawks after the 2017 season.
And of course, the Raiders have one of the worst O-lines in the NFL right now. After a switch to zone-blocking didn’t work in 2017, Cable made the O-line lose weight to fit zone-blocking better. That change hasn’t been working out as Marshawn Lynch was getting 3.46 of his 4.2 yard-per-carry average after contact before injuring his groin.
In the passing game, the Raiders went from No. 4 in pass-blocking efficiency in 2017 to No. 29 with Cable now. Meanwhile the Seahawks, who were No. 26 in the same category last year, have improved to No. 12 without Cable coaching their line.
To be fair, the offensive line has had a lot of injuries on it this season. Left tackle Kolton Miller, the team’s 2018 1st-round pick, actually looked okay to start the season. In the first quarter of the season, Miller saw some great pass-rushers and only gave up one sack. Then he injured his knee in Week 4 and has struggled mightily since.
Donald Penn, who was moved to right tackle, was put on injured reserve with a foot injury. So the Raiders couldn’t move Penn back to left tackle to give Miller a chance to heal and come back. As a matter of fact, Penn’s injury ruined the Raiders’ plans to redshirt developmental 3rd-round pick Brandon Parker, forcing them to start him at right tackle.
So Miller has given up 59 pressures and 14 sacks in 14 games while Parker has given up 38 pressures and nine sacks in 11 games. Right guard Gabe Jackson has now been placed on injured reserve and left guard Kelechi Osemele has been in and out of the lineup. The only healthy O-lineman Cable has every week is center Rodney Hudson.
In Seattle, the Seahawks are still anchored by left tackle Duane Brown and center Justin Britt. But they have majorly improved at the OG position as they replaced Oday Aboushi and Luke Joeckel with DJ Fluker and JR Sweesy. Germain Ifedi, the team’s 2016 1st-round pick, seems have finally made a breakthrough in his third year too.
So how much is Cable leaving Seattle the reason the Seahawks’ O-line has improved?
Is the demise of the Raiders’ O-line tied more to Cable or other factors like injuries and drafting?
Should Jon Gruden fire Tom Cable?
This poll is closed
Yes, he makes a mess of the offensive line wherever he goes.
No, the Raiders have too many injuries on the offensive line and the draft picks aren’t there yet.