The Raiders have officially added Hue Jackson as their offensive coordinator according to a press release issued by the team late this morning. This confirms a move that has been long speculated that will lift the play-calling duties from Tom Cable.
Jackson served as the quarterbacks coach for the Baltimore Ravens from 2007-9. Under his tutelage, Joe Flacco developed into one of the top young quarterbacks. This connection is one the Raiders are hoping that he will make with JaMarcus Russell and help him develop into the player he was expected to become after he was drafted first overall in 2007.
Jackson worked with Cable previously at University of California at Berkeley in 1996 and Califronia State University at Fullerton in 1990. This acknowledgement of the relationship between Cable and Jackson is a tacit admission that Cable will be retained as head coach for the 2010 season.
As late as yesterday, the NFL Network was reporting that the Raiders had not committed to keeping Cable, despite an earlier story by ESPN’s Adam Schefter that the Raiders had already made the decision to keep Cable.
With this move, it removes the play calling responsibility from Cable, who earlier in the offseason had said that he ‘wore too many hats’ and needed to be better about delegating authority. Now that he has an offensive coordinator to handle the play calling and the offensive design, he can focus on his strengths which has been motivation.
It is a sign of support for Cable that they hired an offensive coordinator who has a history with Cable. With the two men having worked together at two different stops in their careers, it is safe to infer that they already have a working relationship. This will allow Cable more comfort in his delegation of the offense to Jackson.
Jackson will have his work cut out for him in ressurecting the Raiders offense. It was among the league worst in passing and rushing last season. Jackson spent last season under offensive guru Cam Cameron in Baltimore, and this will be his chance to show what he learned.