Raiders add experience with new OC

January, 20, 2011
1/20/11
9:40
PM ET
As expected, the Oakland Raiders have added Baltimore assistant Al Saunders to their coaching staff.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Saunders will be Hue Jackson’s offensive coordinator. Jackson, who had a major impact on Oakland’s offense in 2010, said this week he will call the plays in Oakland, but expect Saunders, who will be 64 next month, to have a big role on the staff. Oakland still needs to hire a defensive coordinator. Saunders was San Diego's head coach from 1986-88.

Saunders, who has also been an offensive coordinator in Kansas City and St. Louis, worked with Oakland quarterback Jason Campbell in 2006-07 in Washington as assistant head coach. That experience should help Campbell progress this offseason.

Saunders has interviewed for the head-coaching job in Oakland in the past. So, yes, if Al Davis ever gets the hankering to fire Hue Jackson --- who is Oakland’s sixth head coach since 2002 -- Saunders has potential. Jackson, of course, was Oakland’s offensive coordinator when he replaced Tom Cable who was the Raiders’ offensive line coach when he replaced Lane Kiffin.

UPDATE: It is being talked about that Oakland could pursue a defensive coordinator to run the 3-4 defense. I think that would be a good idea. Oakland has several players who are naturals for the 3-4. It could be a nice fit for this team.

Bill Williamson | email

ESPN Oakland Raiders reporter

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