Posted tagged ‘Oakland Raiders’

Oakland Raiders Owner Al Davis Dies

October 8, 2011

Al Davis, the Hall of Fame owner of the Oakland Raiders, has died at the age of 82.

Just Win Baby! RIP Al Davis!

From CNN:

In a brief post on their website, the Raiders said a statement would be issued later in the day.

The cause of death was not immediately released.

Much of Davis’ career was spent in Oakland, where he first arrived as a coach in 1963 — tasked with turning around a team that was picked to be at the bottom of the standings. The results were almost immediate, finishing 10-4 that season, and Davis was selected as coach of the year.

From KTVU:

It was Davis’ willingness to buck the establishment that helped turn the NFL into THE establishment in sports — the most successful sports league in American history. Davis was charming, cantankerous and compassionate — a man who when his wife suffered a serious heart attack in the 1970s moved into her hospital room.

But he was best known as a rebel, a man who established a team whose silver-and-black colors and pirate logo symbolized his attitude toward authority, both on the field and off.

Davis was one of the most important figures in NFL history. That was most evident during the 1980s when he fought in court — and won — for the right to move his team from Oakland to Los Angeles. Even after he moved them back to the Bay Area in 1995, he went to court, suing for $1.2 billion to establish that he still owned the rights to the L.A. market.


Former Raider Jack Tatum Dies

July 27, 2010

Former Raiders defensive back Jack Tatum has died at the age of 61 of an apparent heart attack.

Nicknamed “The Assassin”, Tatum may be best known for his hit on Darryl Stingley during a preseason game which left Stingley paralyzed.

From Fan House:

Jack Tatum, a three-time Pro Bowler with the Oakland Raiders and a star at Ohio State, died Tuesday of a heart attack, according to multiple reports. Tatum was 61.

A first-round pick by Oakland in the 1971 draft (No. 18 overall), Tatum earned a reputation as one of the hardest hitters to ever play in the NFL — a fact played out in his nickname, “The Assassin.” His crunching hit on Sammy White in Super Bowl XI, a game won 32-14 by the Raiders, still endures on NFL highlight reels.

From NBC4i:

Tatum passed away at 9 a.m. PST Tuesday from a massive heart attack. It was noon EST.

Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel gave this statement on the passing of Jack Tatum: “We have lost one of our greatest Buckeyes. When you think of Ohio State defense, the first name that comes to mind is Jack Tatum. His loss touches every era of Ohio State players and fans.”

Washington Redskins Sue Season Ticket Holders

September 3, 2009

As a fan of professional sports, I am SICKENED by this story out of the NFL.

Pat Hill is one of 125 Washington Redskins season ticket holders who asked to be released from multiyear contracts and were sued by the team over the past five years.

How do you expect to keep fans by acting like this. Just let them out of their contracts. Yes, they signed a contract but circumstances have changed over the past couple of years. Don’t lose your loyal fan base or pretty soon, you’ll have no one left.

Whether you’re a Dallas Cowboys, Oakland Raiders, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings (and the list goes on) fan, be sure to read the whole story and pass this along!

From the Washington Post:

It would be hard to find a more loyal fan of the Washington Redskins than real estate agent Pat Hill. She’s had season tickets since the early 1960s, when her daughter danced in the halftime shows at the old D.C. Stadium, before it was renamed in memory of Robert F. Kennedy.

In the hallway of her modest home south of Alexandria, the 72-year-old grandmother points out the burgundy-and-gold Redskins hook rug she made. In her bedroom, she shows off the pennants from two Redskins Super Bowl games she attended, and she opens a music box on her dresser that plays “Hail to the Redskins.”

Now, Hill says, her beloved Redskins are forcing her into bankruptcy.

Last year, Hill’s real estate sales were hit hard by the housing market crash, and she told the team that she could no longer afford her $5,300-a-year contract for two loge seats behind the end zone. Hill said she asked the Redskins to waive her contract for a year or two.

The sales office declined.

On Oct. 8, the Redskins sued Hill in Prince George’s County Circuit Court for backing out of a 10-year ticket-renewal agreement after the first year. The team sought payment for every season through 2017, plus interest, attorneys’ fees and court costs.

Hill couldn’t afford a lawyer. She did not fight the lawsuit or even respond to it because, she said, she believes that the Bible says that it is morally wrong not to pay your debts. The team won a default judgment of $66,364.

“It really breaks my heart,” Hill said, her voice cracking as the tears well and spill. “I don’t even believe in bankruptcy.

“We are supposed to pay our bills. I ain’t trying to get out of anything.”

Jon Gruden Will Replace Tony Kornheiser on ‘Monday Night Football’

May 18, 2009

Former Oakland Raiders and Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Jon Gruden will join play-by-play man Mike Tirico and analyst Ron Jaworski in September on Monday Night Football, replacing Tony Kornheiser.

From ESPN:

“This is a tremendous opportunity and I am very excited to be associated with ESPN and Monday Night Football,” Gruden said in a statement released by ESPN. “I grew up a fan of Monday Night Football, and whether I’ve coached on Monday night or watched, I’ve hardly missed a game all these years.

“To join Mike and Jaws in the booth and to work alongside this top-notch team is going to be a real thrill.”

The 40th season of “Monday Night Football” kicks off Sept. 14 with a doubleheader; the New England Patriots play host to the Buffalo Bills at 7 p.m. ET and the San Diego Chargers visit the Oakland Raiders at 10:15 ET.

Kornheiser decided to step down after three years of MNF.

Father of New England Patriots QB Matt Cassel Dies

December 10, 2008

New England Patriots quarterback Matt Cassel has left the team to join his family following the death of his father earlier in the week.

A very tough loss for the young Quarterback. My prayers are with his family.

From the Associated Press:

“Our thoughts are with him and his family during this time,” Coach Bill Belichick said before practice. “Right now we’re just taking it day to day. He’s going to take care of what he has to do.”

Belichick said that Greg Cassel died Monday night and Matt has left the team to be with his family in Southern California. Belichick said he didn’t know when Cassel would rejoin the team or whether he would be able to start Sunday against the Oakland Raiders.

The Patriots are practicing this week in San Jose. They stayed on the West Coast after last Sunday’s 24-21 win in Seattle.

Cassel’s teammates expressed their condolences for his loss and offered whatever support they could.

“It’s a part of life,” defensive lineman Richard Seymour said. “It’s one thing that will happen to all of us someday. It’s a tough situation. I don’t think you’re ever prepared for it. We support him and his family.”

Gene Upshaw, Head of NFLPA, Dead at 63

August 21, 2008

Gene Upshaw, the Hall of Fame football player who during his tenure as players union head, helped bring  free agency, has died. Upshaw was 63. Upshaw died Wednesday night at his home in Lake Tahoe, California, of pancreatic cancer, which was diagnosed just this past Sunday.

From the Associated Press:

Upshaw’s death came only two days after the union announced he would hold a briefing on labor negotiations before the September 4 season opener between the Washington Redskins and the New York Giants.

His outstanding 15-season playing career was entirely with the Oakland Raiders and included two Super Bowl wins and seven Pro Bowl appearances. Upshaw’s biography was posted on the front page of the Hall of Fame Web site Thursday along with his enshrinement speech from 1987.

In 1983, he became executive director of the players’ association and guided it through the 1987 strike that led to replacement football. By 1989, the players had a limited form of freedom, called Plan B, and in 1993, free agency and a salary cap were instituted.

Since then, the players have prospered so much that NFL owners recently opted out of the latest labor contract, which was negotiated two years ago by Upshaw and then-commissioner Paul Tagliabue.

Upshaw was criticized by some for not being tough enough in talks with Tagliabue, a close friend of the union head. He also was blamed by many older veterans for not dealing sufficiently with their health concerns.

But the salary cap for this season is $116 million and the players are making close to 60 percent of the 32 teams’ total revenues, as specified in the 2006 agreement. In all, the players will be paid $4.5 billion this year, according to owners.

It’s a sad day for the NFL as Upshaw was an all-time great player and did so much for the NFL Players Union. He will surely be missed. Thoughts?