Word out of the group home known as Raiders training camp is that first-year head coach Tom Cable recently punched an assistant coach, fracturing his jaw and putting Oakland at least a month ahead of schedule for its annual meltdown.
The fight was Aug. 5, but news didn't escaped the cold death-grip of Al Davis' politburo until today, when the National Football Post broke the story. FanHouse's Nancy Gay has the fuller version. Gay writes:
Multiple NFL and Raiders sources have confirmed the victim of the alleged assault was Hanson, a third-year assistant who is in his first season with the team under the title "assistant coach-defense." Two NFL sources have told FanHouse the attacker was Raiders' first-year head coach Tom Cable, and "that Hanson never saw it coming."
Neither Hanson nor the coach who threw the punch were identified in a Napa, Calif., police report taken Aug. 6 at Queen of the Valley Hospital. But one well-placed NFL source told FanHouse of the attacker: "It's a well-known coach. Very well-known."
Pressed to confirm the identity of the attacker, the source said, "It was Cable who hit him."
As Gay notes, Hanson has never been particularly popular among the coaches. He was disciplined last year for an outburst in the season opener, a 41-14 loss to Mike Shanahan's Denver Broncos. "It's a good thing that Shanahan didn't have our players," Hanson said after the game, "or else he would have beaten us 1,000-0."
It appears Hanson won't be pressing charges, which is a pity if only because the Raiders really should have a felon for a head coach.
Sources: Raiders Coach Tom Cable Punched Assistant During Altercation [FanHouse]