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Sunday, January 16, 2011
More coaching intrigue in Oakland

By Bill Williamson
ESPN.com

While the Oakland Raiders are lawyering up once again, the team is reportedly going to have to figure out who will lead the team’s defense in 2011.

It is being reported that the team will not bring back defensive coordinator John Marshall. One potential candidate, Rob Ryan, is off the market. The former Oakland and Cleveland defensive coordinator will lead Dallas’ defense.

The team would not confirm Marshall’s departure, but it wouldn’t be a surprise. Oakland’s defense improved in 2010, but it still gave up way too many big plays and it allowed at least 31 points in six games.

Offensive coordinator Hue Jackson is expected to be promoted to replace the disposed Tom Cable as soon as early this week. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that Baltimore assistant Al Saunders is a candidate to become offensive coordinator.

That is interesting because Saunders worked with Oakland quarterback Jason Campbell in Washington in 2006-07 and that familiarity would give both the player and coach a head start in their Oakland relationship.

Meanwhile, Schefter pointed out a possible reason Cable was dumped in Oakland despite leading Oakland to an 8-8 record. It was Oakland’s’ first non-losing season since 2002. Cable was fined a total of $120,000 by owner Al Davis this season and he has filed a grievance against Davis to recoup his pay. This is nothing new for Davis. Schefter reports that four of Davis’ last five coaches have had financial disputes with the team.