In a surprising turn of events, Oakland Raiders head coach Hue Jackson was fired today after only serving one season as the head coach of the team. He finished the 2011 season with an 8-8 record.
Its not like he did a bad job or his record was terrible this year. Jackson took this Raiders team to within one game of the NFL playoffs and seemed to have this team on the right track.
However, after the season was over, Jackson made some comments that may have led to his dismissal today.
Per a source with knowledge of the situation, public comments from Jackson regarding his desire to exert greater influence rubbed owner Mark Davis and those advising him (e.g., John Madden, Ron Wolf) the wrong way.
When the Raiders were looking for a new general manager, Jackson wanted a big say in how that went as well saying:
"I would hope that as the head coach of this football team, I would hope that the organization understands that I have a pretty good idea of where we need to go. Because if not, then I shouldn’t be where I’m sitting."
However, it looks like Hue was right, the organization does not understand where he wants the team to go; as the new General Manager, Reggie McKenzie and owner Mark Davis did not want Hue around next year.
This isn’t the first time that an Oakland Raiders head coach has been fired after one season. Since the 1997 season, Jackson becomes the Raiders third head coach to be fired after only one season.
However, two of those coaches—Joe Bugel and Art Shell—finished their only seasons with 4-12 and 2-14 records.
According to a tweet from Peter King, when the Raiders choose their new head coach, it will mark the eighth head coach the Raiders will have hired since the turn of the century in 2000.
"I’m going take a stronger hand in this whole team, this whole organization. There ain’t no way that I’m going to feel like I feel today a year from now, I promise you that. There’s no question. Defensively, offensively and special teams. I ain’t feeling like this no more. This is a joke. . . . Yeah, I’m going to take a hand in everything that goes on here."
Jackson was right, in that a year from now he will not feel like that again, because he will not be getting this Raiders team ready for another season.
He, like a number of other recently fired head coaches, will be searching for a new team to call home at the start of the 2012 season. Except in this instance, the firing wasn’t because of anything Hue did on the field.Follow @tjmcaloon