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GameDay: To Play Rolando McClain Or Not To Play Him?

CBS 5 Sports Director Dennis O'Donnell hosts "Gameday" every Sunday night at 11:30pm and offers his unique sports analysis here.

OAKLAND (CBS 5) – Raiders Radio: The first Shakespearean reference ever heard on a Raiders pre-game show.

Rolando McClain. To play him or not to play him? That is the question.

Friends, Romans, Raider nation, lend me your ears. I come to bury Rolando, not to praise him.

McClain was supposed to at the funeral of his grandfather, not allegedly brandishing and firing a weapon. He says he's innocent, but his history would say otherwise.

And while we will in a country where you are innocent until proven guilty, in the words of Hue Jackson, "I have 52 other players that are doing things the right way."

This is an important decision for the rookie head coach who needs McClain on the field, but needs the respect of his players more. Jackson hopes his tenure as head coach is marathon, not a sprint. So a statement of authority is not only likely, it is necessary. Even IF McClain is proven innocent, he put himself in the wrong place at the wrong time. Not good for player with a bad track record.

Furthermore, if Jackson doesn't come down on McClain, the NFL surely will, citing the NFL Player conduct policy. As Warren Sapp once said when he was a Raider, "Some of these new-jack kids act like they're walking on water. Sometimes, they need to be slapped in the face to wake up."

McClain is only a second year player, very talented, very young, and still has time to "wake-up", or follow in the steps of Pac-man Jones.

My heart is there on the sideline with Rolando.

And I must pause 'til it comes back to me.

Until then, I'm DOD, I'll see you on TV with a complete wrap-up of today's game with Kim Coyle in Miami. 11:30pm tonight on CBS5.

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