Bill Callahan is still the Oakland Raiders head coach – for now.
There's no official news regarding Callahan's status the head coach. Callahan conducted a brief press conference Monday that also aired in its entirety on a Bay Area radio station but did not discuss his job status. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that Callahan cleared out his office Friday evening. Callahan discussed at length the reasons behind suspending cornerback Charles Woodson and running back Charlie Garner.
Raiders owner Al Davis has not said yes or no to Callahan's prospects of returning but if it's up to the players, Callahan would be joining Chicago's Dick Jauron, Arizona's Dave McGinnis and Buffalo's Gregg Williams on the list of dismissed coaches.
Callahan said he suspended Woodson and Garner because they missed the mandatory team function that was scheduled at 9 p.m. on Saturday evening and subsequently missed an 11 o'clock curfew. Callahan added that the curfew was double-checked at 12:30 a.m. on Saturday evening. Several Raider players spoke out strongly against Callahan's decision, indicating that the punishment was too severe and inconsistent with similar offenses in the past.
"My decision to bench them was predicated solely as my responsibility as a head football coach and also to the responsibility of this team," Callahan said. "That decision was consistent a year ago when I disciplined a player on the eve of the Super Bowl and the morning of the Super Bowl for missing a team function and missing a practice and a team meeting. The bottom line is that we're all accountable. As an organization and I feel strongly as a society we cannot function without structure and discipline. There are consequences. I'm paid to manage this team and in all fairness to the other team members. I had to do what was necessary as any leader would do in any organization."
Callahan was referring to center Barret Robbins, who went AWOL the night before the Super Bowl. Robbins has sense been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and addressed his problem with alcoholism. Robbins has since rehabilitated himself personally and regained his good standing with the team.
The Raiders concluded their 4-12 season Sunday with a 21-14 loss to the San Diego Chargers. The last time Oakland posted such a record was 1997 and then fired then head coach Joe Bugel.
Will Callahan suffer the same fate? Even though there's no official news, it would be an upset if it did not happen at some point this week.
Vince D'Adamo can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org