Examining Oakland's coaching search

The Oakland Raiders are the only team in the NFL without a head coach. Here’s an update on the situation:

Why: Oakland decided not to extend the contract of coach Tom Cable on Jan. 4.

Process: The Raiders have been conducting interviews and have been evaluating the current coaching staff. Oakland is not naming any candidates for the job.

Leading candidate: Oakland offensive coordinator Hue Jackson. He did a terrific job in 2010 during his first season in Oakland. It would be a surprise if he doesn’t get the job.

Why this job is better than some think: The past few days in the coaching world is proof that time spent in Oakland can help a career. New San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh, new Denver coach John Fox and new Stanford coach David Shaw all spent time with the Raiders in key roles. Numerous former Oakland assistants have become head coaches in recent years. The notion that this is a coaching graveyard is inaccurate.

Other candidates: Again, no firm confirmations have been made but we’ve heard the names of former Oakland assistants Marc Trestman and Rob Ryan. Ryan is talking to Dallas about its defensive coordinator job.

Timetable: The Raiders have no deadline and because no other team is looking for a coach, there is no rush. However, Oakland is getting close to ending their staff evaluation and it wouldn’t be a surprise if the decision is made sooner than later. I can see a decision by the end of next week.

A Scout’s view: “I didn’t think Cable should have been fired, but if you do it, I think Jackson has to be the choice," writes Matt Williamson of Scouts Inc.