Raiders managing general partner Al Davis has wrapped up his staff evaluations and shifted his attention toward naming a new head coach. A decision is expected sooner rather than later.
That's the word emanating from several people familiar with the situation. Barring a last-minute change of mind by Davis, offensive coordinator Hue Jackson is days away from being announced as the replacement for Tom Cable, according to several people who requested anonymity.
Davis typically is the last one to hire a coach during offseasons in which he makes a change. This year won't be any different, as every other vacancy has been filled.
The only question appears to be when Davis springs the news and presides over a news conference for the first time in more than 16 months.
Davis commenced the interview process Monday, and he has interviewed at least one candidate. Jackson is believed to be the odds-on favorite, even if he hasn't interviewed yet.
Jackson could not be reached for comment. However, a person close to Jackson said Jackson is prepared to be a head coach in the NFL for the first time in his career and that he fully expects it to be with the Raiders in 2011.
In other news, three-time Pro Bowl cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha said in an ESPN interview that it would be difficult to leave the Raiders after eight seasons.
He is eligible to become an unrestricted free agent, unless he and the Raiders work out a new contract before
Asomugha said in an interview with Sports Illustrated that he was caught off guard by the news that the option year on his contract voided because of his failure to reach any of a number of likely-to-be-earned incentives last season.
"When you're playing to get into the playoffs, your contract is the last thing on your mind," said Asomugha in his first interview since the season ended Jan. 2. "It wasn't until the season ended (that) the reality of the situation set in."
He added that he hasn't put too much thought into which team he is going to play for in 2011.
"I'm trying not to get too caught up in it right now," he said, citing stalled labor negotiations between NFL players and owners. "Plus, it's my understanding that nothing can really happen until the (collective bargaining agreement) issues are resolved. ... The thought of (free agency) is very new to me. It's tough to describe. I've never been in this position before, ever."