Al Davis, owner of the Oakland Raiders, passes away at age 82
Source: FOX Sports
The NFL has lost one of its most influential and colorful figures.
Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis has died at the age of 82. The news was announced Saturday morning on the team’s web site. No other details were immediately available.
Davis’ career in football dates to 1950. He served as a coach, general manager and even commissioner (in the American Football League that merged with the NFL in 1970) before becoming the Raiders’ principal owner in 1972.
Under his ownership tenure, Oakland won three Super Bowl titles. Davis also holds the record for most Hall of Fame induction speeches given with nine for players and coaches who worked under him, including John Madden and the late Gene Upshaw.
Davis helped revolutionized offense in the early 1960s by implementing an aggressive passing game he referred to as the “vertical game.” Davis’ other fabled mantra was “Just win, baby!” The Raiders did that for most of Davis’ tenure, posting 34 seasons of .500 or better in his 48 years with the franchise.
With his silver-and-black athletic suits, dark sunglasses and slicked-back hair, Davis didn’t usually dress like other NFL team owners. He was known as a maverick when moving his franchise from Oakland to Los Angeles and back. Davis wasn’t afraid to fight for what he believed in and famously butted heads with former NFL commissioner Pete Rozelle about the league’s direction.
Davis built a franchise with a hardcore fan following that remains strong today despite an eight-year streak without a playoff appearance. He also remained closely involved with the franchise despite failing health. Raiders defensive end Jarvis Moss sent a Twitter message Tuesday night about a conversation he had with Davis that day.
“Just got a humbling phone call from Mr. Davis himself!” Moss wrote. “So much respect for what he represents to the game of football.”
Moss isn’t the only one who feels that way, as will be evidenced by the forthcoming myriad of tributes in the wake of Davis’ passing.
Sad day, I was never a Raiders-fan, but I liked them for being the "rebel-team" of the NFL.
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