The media would like us to believe that in the NFL the QB is God and that we are all his willing Sunday subjects. The case is no different for newly acquired Raider QB Carson Palmer, who has been asked if he will be able to "lead" the Raiders to the playoffs this season.
The answer to that question is a resounding, unequivocal "hell no!" He is NOT the leader of this Oakland Raiders team and shouldn't be expected to lead a bunch of grown men he just met yesterday. Hue Jackson is, without a shadow of a doubt, the leader of this football team, in case you forgot.
In fact, without Hue Jackson there would be no Palmer. Better yet, without Jackson there would be Cable (and more losses, ugh).
Hue Jackson is Al Davis' heir apparent, and I'm quite sure Mr. Davis is resting in peace with him at the helm as opposed to the "professional liar" and the fake field goal guru with a grin. Bringing in Palmer is certainly reminiscent to when good old Al brought in the veteran Gannon to spark the Raiders under Gruden.
Hue Jackson is no Gruden; in fact, he may be better. Jackson's witty play-calling and fast-paced offensive scheme has elevated the Raiders to one of the best and most exciting teams in the NFL this season. Gone are the predictable two-receiver sets of "basic" Cable where McFadden would go unused. No more twelve-step drops of Turner and Shell amidst an all-out blitz.
Jackson has managed to turn what was arguably the worst offensive line in NFL history under Cable into one of the more consistent in the league with young upstarts like Wisniewski and Veldheer leading the way. Bey has exploded as he has been incorporated into the offense more with bubble screens and quick slants (who would have known?).
Unfortunately, the defense is still suspect, which no one is ever able to quite figure out in Oakland, so this is a wash. Palmer will start this weekend and will win big (38-14) against the lowly KC Quee—I mean Chiefs, which should immediately boost Palmer's confidence. All CP has to do is sit back in the passenger seat and let the driver steer him and the Raiders to another AFC West championship and a potential playoff bid. Jackson is a shoe in for Coach of the Year.