That sound you hear in the distance is every laser printer in the Raiders organization spitting out a cease and desist letter.
Amazingly, fired Oakland Raiders coach Lane Kiffin has been contacting quarterback JaMarcus Russell.  With coaching advice.
For example, Kiffin called Russell on Monday night to discuss the Saints’ defense.  The Raiders play in New Orleans on Sunday.
He just called and talked to me about their defense, things he would do if he was here,” Russell said, according to Steve Corkran of the Contra Costa Times. “So, really, nothing changed.”
And it wasn’t an isolated incident.
“He has got a lot of off time on his hands,” Russell said, “so he would pay attention to the defense I would have to go up against.  He leaves me a text message or a voice mail here or there.”
There’s no way that this chapter of the Davis vs. Kiffin feud ends well.  The Raiders have coaches in place to tell Russell how to do his job.  Kiffin is no longer one of them.  Regardless of whether you’re in the pro-Raiders or anti-Raiders camp, Kiffin needs to keep his nose out of the situation.
The same theory applies in any other workplace in the world.  Once an employee has been fired — especially when that employee had a key role in the organization — the employee should not be calling up his past subordinates with advice on how to do their jobs.
Though the Raiders are currently as dysfunctional as a pro sports franchise west of Detroit can get, a responsible organization would take swift and decisive action to bring all communication between the current quarterback and former head coach to an end.


  1. I see nothing wrong with this. This is a classy move by Kiffen. Clearly, he still cares about the progress of Russel. How is this any different then a high school or a college coach noticing something and forwarding it along? He’s not making any noise or anything about it. Jamarcus is.

  2. If said employee and Jamarcus are still friends, then why not offer advice to a friend? I am not sure that would constitute anything too horrible as far as infractions against the team go. I mean if I was a really good chef and I got fired from my job, I would tell one of my buddies still on the job how to make a bomb-ass crab cake.

  3. When Al Davis lawyer trys to say Kiffin wasn’t trying or didn’t care – they will refer to these calls.

  4. Now that’s funny. I think that’s even funnier than that Detroit RB stealing the new guy’s stuff. Imagine, you fire a guy and he keeps coming back. There has to be a Seinfeld episode there somewhere.

  5. Al Davis:”Your fired.”
    Kosmo Kiffin:”But I don’t even work here.”
    Al Davis:”Thats what makes this so hard to do.”
    This will help Kiffin in his coaching future. Ecspecially if it’s college. “See how much I care about my players?” Good luck. Win one for the Kiffer lol.

  6. Nothing wrong here, maybe Russel trusts Kiffin’s opinion, especially when it comes to scouting an opposing defense (regardless of the the lack of success at doing so). Maybe Russel vies Kiffen as a mentor of sorts, if that is the case, there is nothing the Raiders can really do to prevent Russel from seeking his advice.

  7. Al Davis should stay out of this one. If Russell picks up the phone and decides to chat about an upcoming opponent with Kiffin, the Raiders should stay out of it. If these two guys developed some sort of bond in the last year and a half, Davis should respect that and not rock the boat with his high priced draft pick any more than he already has. Talking to a former coach about his perspective on an opponent can’t really do any harm, I suppose.

  8. That is just the Kiffins. I once saw Monte in a bar writing notes on a napkin from a college game. Strangely it was the day before the Bucs played the Saints.

  9. @DantSnydersPetCeratto . . . .
    Getting coaching points from a former coach can do harm if the guy who isn’t the coach is telling the player to do something other than what his current coaches are telling him to do.

  10. It REALLY sounds like Al Davis is correct that Kiffen didn’t want Russell and wants to see him fail…

  11. I wonder if Al Davis even consulted with ANY of the players (especially the ones he is personally paying more than $50 million for) to ask for their thoughts on Coach Kiffin. It’s obvious that Jamarcus has a high level of comfortableness with Kiffin that be probably doesn’t have with Greg Knapp (the offensive coordinator that is most remembered for getting chewed out on the sidelines by Terrell Owens in San Francisco after unsuccessful ploys to get him to the ball). Then again… what WRs are getting the ball in Oakland anyway?
    This will only be wrong for Kiffin if the Raiders end up losing on Sunday to the Saints… then Al Davis will probably file a tampering charge on Lane Kiffin, saying that he deliberately gave Jamarcus bad advice.

  12. Wasn’t it questioned whether Jamarcus will trust Kiffin or the organization not too long ago? Looks like this is potentially the first phase in a growing rift between the Raiders and thier quarterback.

  13. @Mike Florio – thats assuming Cable is actually in charge. Otherwise they are probably running plays from the Al Davis era, you know, like before the forward pass.

  14. I fail to see how (unless there are draconian clauses within Jamarcus Russell’s contract) Al Davis can do one damned thing about who Russell chooses to talk to.
    But your the lawyer Florio… so you must know, right? Whats Davis going to do… make Jamarcus file for a restraining order by claiming Kiffin is making threatening phone calls? LOL

  15. I don’t see how a ‘cease and desist’ against Kiffin would do anything. It would violate his first amendment rights. The Raiders no longer have control over him. If Al Davis wants this to stop, he has to go to JaMarcus Russel.

  16. yeah right
    his advice to russell sure looked fine so far especially the last game vs san diego
    did he tell him plays he knew would not work for sure against the saints defense he must now be an expert on. how would he know? he’s been coaching in oakland for 2 years. saints on other side of country.
    russell is messing with the sportswriters mind!
    the sportswriter should be ired and davis should demand it, just like the goof writer in dallas wanting to fire a cowboys player

  17. Funny, I thought Kiffin didn’t want Russell in the first place… for a guy who didn’t want to draft him, he sure seems to be taking interest in improving him. Maybe Al Davis/Mum’Ra The Ever-Living was the one lying?

  18. Its just advice. People need to relax. He can use it or not. If he gets in the game and starts to see things that Kiffin was mentioning and his own coaches weren’t, it only helps him. Too many people making mountains out of ant hills.

  19. Kiffin is overcompensating for what Davis revealed in his press conference about not desiring to draft him.

  20. It’s really simple: being nice is not the same as being ethical or professional.
    Kiffen contacting Russell may be “a nice thing to do”, but it is simply not appropriate in any business environment, let alone in an industry where basically all information is a trade secret.

  21. “Its just advice. People need to relax. He can use it or not.”
    It’s advice from a recently fired coach who had at best a tenuous relationship with the owner and the def. cord. If Russell goes out there and gets picked 2 or 3 times, everyone will say Kiffin sabotaged the Raiders. If he goes out there and throws 2 or 3 TD passes, people will say how come this didn’t happen under Kiffin.
    It’s a lose-lose situation.

  22. For once I agree with Florio, a rare thing.
    If I’m the owner, I fire a guy then find out he is giving advice to my employees, I have to consider that the advice may be intentionally bad in order to get revenge. I have no more power over the former employee, but I can sure as hell tell the current one to sever contact regarding anything work related.
    That being said, I hope to see the Faiders flounder in the NFL sewer for years to come

  23. This is a little unusual. Based on how this was writen, it looks as if Kiffin is contacting Jamarcus Russell, unsolicited.
    I would see no problem if Russell contacted Kiffin, but Kiffin contacting Russell? Really strange… Perhaps overcompensation.
    Oh well – The Raiders – They put the fun in dysfunction.

  24. This is awesome. I wonder if JaMarcus picks up the phone to the booth or a cell phone to Kiffin between offensive series this weekend?

  25. I can’t believe people are defending Lane Kiffin on this.
    He WAS the head coach, he got FIRED and he’s still COACHING Russell.
    I know most of have no business sense but come on, a blind deaf man could see somethings not right with this.
    Now throw in the fact that he was fired primarily because he was perceived to be sabotaging the team.
    NOW do you knuckleheads understand why this is wrong?
    Aye Carumba.

  26. I don’t think it’s a big deal. If anything, I think it goes to show that Big Al’s comments on how Kiffin feels about Russell where egregious (yes… you can call me Emmitt… ha). I think it says a lot about how he felt about the guys in the locker room. He was committed to them (it seems) and from the little you can get out of the locker room, they seem to have been committed to him.

  27. Why do Raider fans think he is sabotaging the team? I think nothing could be farther from the truth. Still I think it would be in Kiffin’s best interest to stay away, at least until after the dust settles. Still, either Lane developed a strong relationship after Russell was “forced” on him, or Al was full of s#!@. I’m voting for the latter, and THAT is the key issue here.

  28. Kiffin’s a private citizen. He can call whoever he pleases and say whatever he wants to them. Russel doesn’t seem to mind. They seem to be friends. If Russel doesn’t want to talk to Lane, he can ignore the call and not pick up.
    These are two American citizens you’re talking about. They can talk to each other all they want unless and until Kiffin gets another gig in the league.

  29. it puts the lie to the “kiffin didnt want russell” argument… might just be russell’s way of letting his true opinions out
    dysfunction junction, what’s yer malfunction?

  30. Why would Kiffin want to sabotage the Raiders?
    I mean, lets be honest, what more can be done to the Raiders at this point? Sabotage? Come on, they’re pre-sabotaged as it is by ownership!

  31. What a tool. Kiffin has a vested interest in seeing Oakland fail. Tampering with the QB would be the easiest way to do that. Again he should shut his pie hole and go coach kiddie ball.

  32. I see nothing wrong with Kiffin doing this. If you have a problem it should be with Jamarcus
    accepting advice from someone outside of the coaching staff. maybe russell is making a
    statement to davis?

  33. wow…….
    kiffin’s trying to lose whatever lawsuit he’s got upcoming with oakland
    and hear i thought this guy was the good guy vs the old senile piece of shit al davis
    davis is still satan, but kiffin’s acting very retarded

  34. Does he have “dain bramage” or what?
    I guess he really doesn’t want his money? Or maybe he has figured out that Al was telling the truth, and he does not deserve it?
    His silence (and absence of a grievance) is deafening!
    “Noel Devine cannot carry Joe McKnight’s spit bucket”

  35. My prediction came true – the Raiders are now like the company in “Office Space”! Al Davis is Bill Lumbergh, Kiffen is Milton (That’s my Black and Silver swingline!) and Russell is Peter. Maybe they can trade for Houshmanzadah to play Samir?

  36. Now Kiffin can coach without Al Davis behind his back!! Who else has Kiffin been communicating with?
    Maybe Kiffin’s plans might work to win more games than when he was official Raiders’ HC!!! LMAO

  37. Anyone here who does not see the conflict of interest in this issue; has foresight that ends at the tip of their nose.
    I am sure the same people would suggest a spouse in the midst of a divorce accept/implement legal advise from the OTHER SPOUSE!!!
    “Noel Devine cannot carry Joe McKnight’s spit bucket”

  38. I see nothing wrong with this. Like someone before me said, he still is taking an interest in the development in Russell and i believe it was the same person who said there is no difference with that and high school or college coaches giving advice. It seems like Kiffin, who I am a big fan of, is just pointing out stuff that the coaches might not catch in game film or that the coaches have caught, told JaMarcus to pay extra attention to it. It doesn’t seem like he is telling Russell to blow off his coaches and listen to him. He is still taking interest in the team and Russell and it will only help him and the Raiders in the long run. They have an extra pair of eyes watching the games of their opponents and them. Nothing wrong with what he is doing at all. He isn’t working for another team so it isn’t tampering. Maybe you should put an update on what is so wrong with what he is doing, so people acually understand what you guys are getting at.

  39. voodoodauley:
    I think the Raiders are capable of failing just fine on their own without Kiffin “tampering” with their QB. And what does that say about Russell if that IS Kiffin’s motivation and Russell goes through with it? Geez, you Raider fans are morons who can’t see the forest through your sleaze.

  40. Al has sent Amy Trask, to the nearest Sprint store (freebie for ya Florio) to get J Russ a new phone and number, with a block feature on Kiff’s phone number(s)..

  41. myopinionisrighterthanyours says:
    October 9th, 2008 at 3:01 pm
    I think the Raiders are capable of failing just fine on their own without Kiffin “tampering” with their QB. And what does that say about Russell if that IS Kiffin’s motivation and Russell goes through with it? Geez, you Raider fans are morons who can’t see the forest through your sleaze.
    Pot —> Kettle = black… maybe if you were realistic in “seeing the forest through your own sleaze” you would realize that Kiffin tried to get fired and has an agenda against Oakland. 76 yard field goal???? Maybe if Kiffin would have done a better job and kept his mouth shut…. he could still be paid for coaching. Remove your head from your exit for digested food stuffs.

  42. Has Al Davis considered looking at Bruce Arians as his head coach. There are a lot of people in Pittsburgh who would recomend him for the job.

  43. Oh, that’s right. That attempted 76 yard field goal AS TIME WAS EXPIRING FOR THE HALF was the reason that the Raiders lost that game. It had nothing to do with their defense choking it away. My bad! Look, it doesn’t matter WHO your head coach is, that team is not set up for success. How you Faider fans don’t see this is just incredibly beyond me. And you still failed to disprove my arguement because assuming what you are saying is true, follow it to my logical conclusion of what does that say about Russell (and the organization for that matter, or at least JaMarcus’ opinion of it)? You failed to answer that question, bucky.

  44. Are any of you who thinks this is okay actually employed?
    This is insane. Davis CAN, and should, control his employees, who Kiffin contacts about football related (proprietary) information. I agree that I don’t know why JR brought this forward or what the effects will be. Rest assured that it won’t go over smoothly with Davis though. Davis expects absolute loyalty.
    This does nothing to dispell the notion that Kiffin didn’t want to draft JR. In fact, it could just as easily be used to show Kiffin’s disingenuity and sneakiness to sabotage this already unstable organization. I doubt his attorney’s are aware of this behavior, until now.
    As the other poster stated before. Kiffin’s silence is deafening and if he had a leg to stand on for a defemation suit, why didn’t he file it already. Surely it’s not because of his reluctance to air dirty laundry.

  45. I laugh at those who claim this “puts the lie to the “kiffin didnt want russell” argument”.
    Just because the man didn’t want to draft him, it doesn’t mean he can’t have a change of heart, or doesn’t like the guy. There is a huge difference there. What, do you guys think he didn’t want to help Russell out in camp, because he didn’t get his way on draft day? That’s just plain stupid.
    Some of you will make up, or buy into anything, no matter how far fetched, just to give credit to your ill thought beliefs.

  46. “And you still failed to disprove my arguement because assuming what you are saying is true, follow it to my logical conclusion of what does that say about Russell (and the organization for that matter, or at least JaMarcus’ opinion of it)? You failed to answer that question, bucky. ”
    because BONEHEAD…. it doesn’t matter if Russel listens or not… fact is KIFFIN called HIM…. and TRIED to offer ADVICE. Since KIFFIN was FIRED for giving BAD advice it goes to show that his OPINION isn’t WANTED within the ORGANIZATION that he has secured LEGAL REPRESENTATION against. His TAMPERING is ill advised AT BEST. BUT YOU have no MENTAL CAPACITY to understand such complexities. Your just another hater… get in line BUCKY….

  47. Kiffin should continue to COACH JM through the season by text, phone, email or CB radio if he so chooses! This is a FREE country by golly and if Davis complains…..SO WHAT!! You go Lane!!!! LOL!

  48. Kiffin will explain that he cares about his former players and team and is just trying to help and many will use this as further validation that firing him was wrong. However, didn’t Kiffin also tell the press over and over that distractions regarding the coaching situation were affecting the team’s preparations? Why then, if he cared so much, would he do anything that could lead to further distractions for the team? Obviously, calling a player that works for the organization that just fired you without pay and is preparing for their first game without you, as you prepare to file a grievance against that organization, could be a bit controversial. Does anyone with a grasp on the situation REALLY think Lane had nothing but good intentions by calling his former QB? Hmmmmmmmm….
    Maybe Kiffin is getting beat at his own media game. Jamarcus could’ve even been instructed to talk to the press about Kiffin calling him.
    Russell talking to the press about his contact with Lane confirms further questionable actions by the guy, both in the press and in the league office.
    Russell appears to have no agenda; he is merely stating the facts. If these conversations were revealed by Al or a “source close to the situation,” many would automatically dismiss the claims due to the situation and/or their dislike for Davis.
    Russell knows Kiffin didn’t want him, regardless of their relationship since then. Maybe it bothered him more than he let on…
    No matter how Kiffin spins it–and regardless of his intentions or Jamarcus’–there is no denying that he has engaged in unethical, unprofessional activity once more. The purpose of his calling Jamarcus is totally irrelevant to the situation from a professional standpoint.
    Lane has been used to doing underhanded things and making statements that serve his purpose to the media, knowing that the Raiders would not respond or comment and that if they did, Davis’ reputation and past conflicts would make accusations against the young coach less believable. Now, he cannot shift responsibility, deny involvement or exploit public opinion to refute Jamarcus’ statements.
    Although I’m sure ESPN and many others will try their best to help him out, this will not be looked upon favorably by the league and other owners.

  49. Hey myopinionisrighterthanyours, didn’t your mom teach you not to say ANYTHING if you don’t know what’s going on?
    That 76 yard FG was attempted at the end of the half BECAUSE KIFFIN LET 35 SECONDS EXPIRE BEFORE CALLING A TIMEOUT WITH 1 SECOND ON THE CLOCK.
    Everybody in the stadium, the announcers, the players and anybody watching were speechless.
    You want another example?
    The game before this one against the Bills, Buffalo was well withing FG range with about 1 1/2 minutes left in the game. Kiffin refused to use his 2 remaining time outs and let the Bills drain the clock down to 3 seconds before the Bills called a timeout and won the game.
    Remember, if you don’t know what you’re talking about, don’t say anything.

  50. joetoronto:
    Thanks, I watched the game, too, and was equally confused. However, let’s look at it, shall we. A) the chances of making the 76 yard FG were equally as bad as making the 59 yard hail mary TD. While baffling, did it REALLY make a difference. B) Like your buddy voodoowhatever, YOU FAILED TO DISPROVE MY ARGUEMENT that it was the Faider D that choked that game away. Once again, Faider fans can’t the forest through their sleaze. Just lose, baby!

  51. First of all, no.
    The chances off making a 76 yard Fg are none, zippo, nadda.
    The chances of completeing a hail mary are not good at all, but there’s a CHANCE.
    Regardless, you must of missed the part where I explained that Kiffin wasted half a minute and THEN called a timeout.
    I guess I have to state the obvious, they had time to try another play and get closer BEFORE calling the timeout.
    Tell me, myopinionisrighterthanyours, how old are you?
    I’m just curious.

  52. Well, Joe, if you bother to check back and see this, not that you’d believe it, but I’m 33. And no, I didn’t miss the part about wasting the half minute because he obviously had made up his mind as to what he was going to do. Teams do it all the time, just not usually from their own 41. But, still, YOUR D CHOKED THAT GAME AWAY!! Regardless of how crazily the half ended. While questionable, IT IS NOT WHY THE RAIDERS LOST!!!

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