When the Raiders drafted Kolton Miller and Brandon Parker last weekend, a shift in team thinking crystallized. After Oakland hired Jon Gruden, no one clearly knew how the second incarnation would go. Yet, optimism breeds uncertainty. With a great deal riding on the arm of Derek Carr, Jon Gruden turned to  Tom Cable.

Influence

When Tom Cable helped the Seattle Seahawks win a title, he did so with less than talented linemen. However, what he did enjoy was a standout quarterback, and violent run game. On the other hand, the offensive line performed well enough. With that said, Seattle deviated from the line emphasis. As a result, Russell Wilson endured violent hits and teams made him flee the pocket.

In Oakland, Cable receives his fresh start. Immediately, the revamping of the offensive line began. Tom Cable looks to have Jon Gruden’s ear. Drafting two tackles signifies Cable owns sway in the meeting room. In addition, bringing back Marshawn Lynch feels like a Cable move. Lynch enjoyed the most successful years of his career under him in Seattle. Despite Greg Olson’s presence, Tom Cable feels like the de facto offensive coordinator next to Gruden.

 

Draft Strategy

In Seattle, the Seahawks did not truly address the tackle situation during the draft. Justin Britt is the only tackle drafted in the first three rounds when Cable roamed the sidelines. Now, the Raiders selected Miller and Parker. Instead of drafting for one spot, they doubled down. For the first time in years, the Raiders look to have the makings of young bookends.

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With the selection of Miller, the Raiders earned gasps and head shakes. Yet, Cable remains unfazed. Like most coaches, fan approval means nothing. When draft pundits openly question Miller’s drafting, they need to look to Cable for the move.

 

Penn

Cable’s arrival and influence in the war room Created uncertainty for Donald Penn. With Osemele, Hudson, and Jackson locked up. They appear untouchable. However, Penn’s age, and the arrival of younger tackles makes the next few weeks intriguing. Compounding the issue,

In contrast, Penn’s contract could serve as a redeeming quality for 2018. If the Raiders release him, he counts for 3 million in dead cap money. Instead, if Penn plays the season, seeing his release before next March, Oakland suffers no dead money.

In addition, according to Michael Silver, the Raiders will ask Penn to take a pay cut or face release. And yes, we all know about the domestic violence allegations. However, Penn and his wife dispute these claims.

In reality, Tom Cable’s voice grew since he left Seattle. His vision for the offensive line dictates the course of the offense. Whether the Raiders’ picks sink or swim will bear a direct reflection of his teaching.

 

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