Raiders coach Tom Cable has picked Bruce Gradkowski as the starting quarterback for today's game against the Miami Dolphins despite giving every indication that he was sticking with Jason Campbell.
Two people from within the organization and a person in Gradkowski's camp confirmed that Cable is switching quarterbacks once again.
Campbell started the past five games, while Gradkowski recovered from a strained right shoulder. Cable yanked Campbell late in the third quarter last Sunday in a 35-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, but Cable said afterward that Campbell would "be the starter next week, there is no issue there."
The first sign that Cable changed his mind came when the Raiders failed to make available Campbell or Gradkowski on Wednesday, as is customary throughout the season.
The Raiders promised access to Campbell on Thursday. However, senior executive John Herrera wrote off the scuttled interview because "it's Thanksgiving."
Campbell finally spoke Friday but only because reporters approached him as he walked off the practice field. During a brief interview, he acted as if he were the starter for today's game.
The move comes a little more than two weeks after Cable and several Raiders officials bristled at a Bay Area News Group story that said Raiders managing general partner Al Davis got word to Cable that he preferred to see Campbell as the starter.
"This organization, regardless of what's written or what's said, or what some unnamed source, or whatever that is, says, is run by the owner and it's coached by the coach," Cable said in response to the Bay Area News Group report. "As it pertains to this football team, the decisions that go on with players, they're going to be made by me. I made that clear since Day One. And that's the way we do business. And, obviously, it's working."
Calls to Herrera on Saturday went unanswered. No one from the Raiders acknowledged the switch to Gradkowski.
The two people within the organization said Cable and offensive coordinator Hue Jackson prefer Gradkowski as the starter, while Davis still sides with Campbell.
Cable has yanked Campbell twice this season. He pulled him at halftime of Oakland's regular-season home opener against the St. Louis Rams, with the Raiders trailing 7-3. Gradkowski guided the Raiders to a 16-14 victory.
On Friday, Campbell said he doesn't worry about being replaced in the middle of a game.
"I feel like, for the most part in this season, I had a pretty good year," Campbell said, "and, hey, we lost two tough games, but that happens."
Cable said he isn't "concerned about that right now," when asked if the prospect of yanking Campbell affects his quarterback's mindset.
He said that he and Campbell are on the same page in terms of how things operate.
"He and I, we talk all the time," Cable said. "We talk about a lot of things all the time. He is OK with where we're going and what we're doing, and he understands it's the job. It comes with it."
at Raiders (5-5)