<span> <span style="text-decoration: underline;">Oakland Raiders Head Coach Tom Cable</span>
<span style="">Q: How are you doing in your first game week preparation and how different has it been?</span>
A: A little bit, but at the same time, the plan's in place to kind of keep this team moving hopefully in the right direction. We're just kind of taking it day by day and not really worrying about too much, just sticking to the plan.
Q: Are you a little bit surprised at everything that's happened and to find yourself the head coach in week five?
A: I think everybody is surprised when something like this happens and as I mentioned, when it did happen, it's the business, it's unfortunate and you move on.
Q: With everything that has happened, are players wondering about things?
A: We talked initially about it a little bit and you'd have to ask them. They've been great. They've been great around practice. They've been great around the complex. We're getting the work done that we need to get done and we're just staying on course.
Q: What will be some of the differences now that you're the head coach?
A: The bottom line is you hope to keep getting better. You hope to improve on 1-3 right now and that's not good enough. You want to find the areas that have to be improved in order to give you the best chance to succeed. That's really been the focus. It's kind of dialing in on where we're at, self-evaluation of this football team and addressing those issues.
Q: Is there anything specific that you can try changing at this point?
A: No, I really don't think it's about change. I think it's improving where we're at and evaluating if that's the best thing to be doing in those circumstances and this situation and if it's not, then you might tweak it. For us, it's about getting better and executing better, staying the course.
Q: What pushed you to accept this head coaching job?
A: I think when Mr. Davis and I sat down and he approached me about it with his belief I was the right guy to do this under the circumstances at this time. I think he really convinced me who I am and what I try to do as a football coach is what this team needs right now. His really convincing me is what made me decide to do it.
Q: What are your feelings about the potential of JaMarcus Russell at this point?
A: I think for our football team, he's quickly becoming a leader. For a young guy, his presence and how he carries himself, how he manages himself both on and off the field, how he works at practice, his work ethic has been really, really positive and I think his future is tremendous.
Q: What does he do that is better than everyone else that you think can make him an elite player?
A: First of all, I don't know that there's too many arms like JaMarcus has in this league. You have a big, tall strong guy that can really throw it. What he has to learn to do and continue to get better at is accuracy and making quicker decisions, things like that, which comes for a young quarterback, the more you play. You can already see it in how he develops. We're obviously thinking we have a breakthrough coming sometime soon here and when that happens, I think that everything that kid was thought to be he'll be.
Q: In terms of his role on the team going forward, is it going to be something where he's the guy out there trying to make a play every time or are you going to focus a whole lot in terms of the running game? What do you think of his role?
A: I think in this league to win games, you have to play well at quarterback, but to say you're going to rely on him to be the hero, I don't believe in that, not in the game of football. I think it takes every guy that's out there. Every guy's got a job to do and a role to play, so it's all of us. At the same time, you expect him as he grows and develops that there will be some times where he makes some of those wild throws and he does some of those things in the fourth quarter which will probably define him as a quarterback in this league.
Q: Is Reggie Bush looked at in the same light as Devin Hester these days in terms of returning punts?
A: I think so. I think if you don't, you're kidding yourself. He's a special, special player. He changed the game the other night a couple times and really he's fun to watch, but not really fun to get ready for. You have to do what you have to do.
Q: There's been a lot of discussion with hits to the quarterback by defensive players and some of the fines. Do you think the league has taken away from some of the defense?
A: Obviously I haven't really thought about something like that, so I won't touch that.
Q: Is this the biggest game of your coaching career coming up?
A: They're all big. It was big to me in high school. It was big in college. This is big, so it's the biggest game this Sunday.
Q: Have you talked to Lane Kiffin since all this has gone down?
A: We spoke the day that it happened. He's a good friend. It's part of the business. I was kind of a weird day. A friend loses his job. Having been through that, you feel for him and his family. Lane's good people and he'll be fine.