Oakland Raiders’ success due to Tom Cable

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Oakland Raiders’ success due to Tom Cable
Coming off two straight blow-out victories, the Oakland Raiders pulled off a third straight victory to improve to 5-4 with a 23-20 victory over their division rivals, the Kansas City Chiefs, on Sunday. The win didn’t quite put them in first place, as the
Chiefs are 5-3, but it has improved Oakland’s divisional record to 3-0.
They beat the struggling San Diego Chargers 35-27 on 10 October, and the Denver Broncos 59-14 in Denver on 24 October. Now they’ve beaten the Chiefs, another surprise team.
Before the season began, few thought the Chargers would be below .500 after nine weeks. Fewer still thought the Chiefs and Raiders would be vying for top spot in the American Football Conference (AFC) West. But as it stands now, the Chargers are 4-5, and
behind both the Chiefs and Raiders, and the Denver Broncos are even further behind with a 2-6 record.
Much of the Raider’s success this season is coming from third-year pro running back, Darren McFadden, who has 757 yards on the ground so far this year, and four touchdowns. He’s helped Oakland become the third ranked rushing team in the NFL.
Their passing defence is also one of the best in the league, also ranked third. But it’s more than just a solid running game and a good pass defence that’s put the Raiders in the position they’re in. It’s also the man behind the team, their head coach, Tom
Before Sunday’s game, Cable pleaded with the fans of Oakland to come out and make some noise. The fans, excited by the team’s resurgence, complied.
“When we start to do our part we're going to need you. And we need them (the crowd) now,” said Cable before the game. “We need them to take over that stadium in silver and black on Sunday.”
Cable is a good play caller, at least he’s willing to try things out, as was evident on Sunday. Cable pulled out the wildcard formation against Kansas City.
“It's just something that fit for this opponent,” Cable said. “We had a couple of guys on our team who had done it in the past as college football players, and it was very productive for us.”
But it’s more than that, there are a lot of good play callers in the NFL, a lot of good coaches. No one really believes that Brad Childress, head coach of the Minnesota Vikings, is a bad coach, but he’s not winning, and he’s getting the bulk of the blame.
Childress doesn’t have his team buying into what he’s saying, that’s also part of being a good coach. Cable seems to have that in abundance.
“We’re back – there’s no doubt about it,” said McFadden. “We’ve been believing in ourselves. We play for each other. We show it on the field.”
Over the past few years the Raiders have had difficulty climbing out of holes that they dug for themselves. A penalty, turnover, and opposing team score could deflate the team in the first quarter, giving their opponents easy wins, but not this year.  
In the first quarter of Sunday’s game, a fake punt attempt failed, giving the Chiefs the ball on the Oakland 47-yard line. A few plays later the Chiefs scored to take a 7-0 lead in the game. That lead was extended to 10-0 by half time.  Before this season
that might have been enough for anyone to beat the Raiders, but instead they scored two touchdowns in the third quarter en route to a victory.
“You already know what would have happened,” said defensive tackle Tommy Kelly referring to what might have happened last season or the one before. “We’d have went in the d**n tank and lost that [expletive].”
The Raiders head into their bye week with their first three-game winning streak in eight years. When they return to action they’ll play one of the best teams in the AFC, the Pittsburgh Steelers. If the Raiders really are coming back into form, a win against
one of their biggest historic rivals would be quite a statement for Cable and the team to make.



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