Tom Cable

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Tom Cable
Candid waist-up photograph of Cable wearing a dark blue, long sleeve pullover with a Seattle Seahawks logo standing on a football sideline
Cable in 2015
Seattle Seahawks
Position: Offensive line coach &
Assistant head coach
Personal information
Date of birth: (1964-11-26) November 26, 1964 (age 51)
Place of birth: Merced, California
Career information
High school: Snohomish (WA)
College: Idaho
Undrafted: 1987
Career history
As player:
As coach:
Head coaching record
Regular season: NFL: 17–27 (.386)
NCAA: 11–35 (.239)
Coaching stats at PFR

Thomas Lee Cable, Jr. (born November 26, 1964) is an American football coach currently working as the offensive line and assistant head coach of the Seattle Seahawks of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at the University of Idaho and was on the replacement team for the Indianapolis Colts during the 1987 NFL players' strike. After being an assistant coach for several college football teams, as well as head coach at Idaho, Cable became an offensive line coach for the Atlanta Falcons and Oakland Raiders of the NFL before serving as head coach for the Raiders from 2008 to 2010.

Early life[edit]

Cable was born in Merced, California. He played high school football in Snohomish, Washington, northeast of Seattle. He graduated from Snohomish High School in 1982 and accepted an athletic scholarship to the University of Idaho from first-time head coach Dennis Erickson.

Playing career[edit]

Cable played on the offensive line for the Idaho Vandals for head coaches Dennis Erickson and Keith Gilbertson, blocking for quarterback Scott Linehan. Idaho won the Big Sky title in 1985 and advanced to the Division I-AA playoffs in 1985 and 1986. He was a member of the 1987 Indianapolis Colts strike replacement team, but did not play in the two games he was on the team's active roster.

Coaching career[edit]


Cable then embarked on a career as a college football coach. He was a graduate assistant for three years and an assistant coach for a decade, ascending to offensive coordinator at Colorado in 1999. On December 13, 1999, he became the head coach at his alma mater, with a three-year contract at $170,000 per year ($120,000 base and $50,000 media bonus) plus $30,000 in incentives.[1] He succeeded fellow alumnus Chris Tormey, who had departed earlier in the month after five seasons for Nevada. At Idaho, Cable's first year, 2000, was his best, with a 5–6 record. He managed only six victories in the next three seasons, resulting in a disappointing record of 11–35 (.239), in four losing seasons.[2] Following the 2003 season, Cable became the first Idaho head football coach fired in 22 years; his four predecessors had all achieved success in Moscow and moved on. Cable then became the offensive coordinator at UCLA for two seasons (2004–2005) under head coach Karl Dorrell, a former colleague at Colorado.

Atlanta Falcons[edit]

Cable entered the professional ranks as a coach 2006 as the offensive line coach for the NFL's Atlanta Falcons, under head coach Jim L. Mora. Mora was dismissed at the end of the season and Cable moved on.

Oakland Raiders[edit]

He joined the Oakland Raiders as offensive line coach for the 2007 season, under first-year head coach Lane Kiffin. Four games into the 2008 season with the team's record at 1-3, Kiffin was fired by owner Al Davis and Cable was named the interim head coach. The Raiders finished the 2008 season with a 4-8 record under Cable, but improved statistically in many categories.

On February 4, 2009, Cable was officially introduced as the Raiders new head coach. Davis had made his decision nearly a week before, but did not want to interfere with the Super Bowl. Davis also gave Cable time off prior to that due to the death of Cable's father.[3] On January 4, 2011, Raiders' owner Al Davis informed Cable that his contract would not be renewed, ending his tenure with the organization. During his time as head coach, Cable had a 17–27 record, including a record of 8-8 in his final season, going 6-0 in the division for the first time in franchise history. The offensive coordinator, Hue Jackson succeeded him as head coach.

The Raiders rushing attack ranked in the top 10 in the NFL in 2007 (sixth) and 2008 (10th) behind his offensive lines.

Seattle Seahawks[edit]

Two weeks later on January 18, 2011, Cable was hired by the Seattle Seahawks as offensive line coach and assistant head coach, under head coach Pete Carroll.

In collaboration with offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell, the two spearheaded Seattle's rushing attack to become one of the best over the last-half of the 2011 season. Behind his lines, the Seahawks running game ranked fifth in the NFL with 1,212 rush yards (Weeks 9-17), posted 100-plus team rushing yards in eight of its last nine games, including a six-game streak that was its longest since the 2002-03 seasons.

Seattle’s line once ranked as the third youngest in the NFL, but with injuries to rookie RT James Carpenter and RG John Moffitt, and second-year LT Russell Okung, the Seahawks line finished as the seventh-youngest in the league. Despite that, Cable plugged away and maintained a solid unit as Seattle’s line paved the way for Marshawn Lynch’s career-year in carries (285), yards (1,204) and rushing touchdowns (12). Lynch also led the league the last half of the season with 941 yards and nine touchdowns, rushing for 100-plus in six of the last nine games and became Seattle’s first 1,000-yard rusher since Shaun Alexander (2005). Cable won his first Super Bowl ring as an assistant coach to the Seattle Seahawks.

Personal life[edit]

Cable is married with four children: Amanda, Alexander, Zachary, and Ryan. Cable dropped over 130 pounds of weight while a Seahawks coach due to what he termed clean eating.[4]

Allegations of violence[edit]

On August 17, 2009, ESPN reported that Cable was accused of punching assistant coach Randy Hanson in the face and fracturing his jaw. The incident allegedly took place on August 5 during the Raiders training camp, held in Napa. On October 22, 2009, the Napa district attorney announced that no charges would be filed against Cable.[5] Hanson later filed a civil suit against Cable and the Raiders, citing assault, battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress.[6] The matter was settled in arbitration.[7]

On November 1, 2009, the ESPN show Outside the Lines reported that Cable was accused of physical abuse against two ex-wives and an ex-girlfriend.[8] One of the accusers filed a civil suit against Cable, which was later settled.[9]

Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis specifically called attention to the allegations of violence against women and the altercation with Hanson in contributing to his decision to fire Cable. In addition, Davis fined Cable $120,000.[10]

Coaching tree[edit]

NFL head coaches under whom Tom Cable has served:

Assistant coaches under Tom Cable who became NFL head coaches:

Head coaching record[edit]


Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Idaho Vandals (Big West Conference) (2000)
2000 Idaho 5–6 3–2 3rd
Idaho Vandals (Sun Belt Conference) (2001–2003)
2001 Idaho 1–10 1–5 7th
2002 Idaho 2–10 1–5 7th
2003 Idaho 3–9 3–4 6th
Idaho: 11–35 8–16
Total: 11–35


Team Year Regular season Post season
Won Lost Ties Win % Finish Won Lost Win % Result
OAK 2008 4 8 0 .333 3rd in AFC West - - - -
OAK 2009 5 11 0 .312 3rd in AFC West - - - -
OAK 2010 8 8 0 .500 3rd in AFC West - - - -
OAK Total 17 27 0 .386 - - - -
Total[11] 17 27 0 .386 - - - -