From Raiders Gab Columnist Oren Shiri
Al Davis has been the owner of the Oakland Raiders in good times and bad. As the days grow closer to this years NFL draft there’s no telling what’s the outlook for the next chapter in Raiders history.
There’s no getting around that he’s currently recognized as one of the worst owners in American sports. But in other terms, he’s been one of the most successful as well. With Al, it’s a business, but he has had some share of blunders over the years. At the age of 81, Davis still has the ability to attract an audience jam-packed of reporters and cameras at every angle.
Al Davis may seem senile to most, but in all due respect the Raiders owner has two things going for him—the understanding of business and football experience. Mr. Davis has been the team owner since 1967 and was the previous commissioner of the American Football League (AFL) from 1966-1970 when he resigned from his post to continue running the team. The Raiders were one of the most successful franchises from ’67-’85 and his team won three Super Bowl Championships.
However, “that was then, this is now.” His relationship with the NFL and understanding of the game today has tremendously decreased—basically leaving on a sour note that is not only heard around-the-league, but in the media as well. Al Davis has been no stranger to having feuds with former coaching and player greats and was even sued by the NFL over departing the LA market in a back-and-forth battle.
The last appearance in the Super Bowl was in 2002, when the franchise featured Jerry Rice, Tim Brown and someone with a cannon, Rich Gannon. It wasn’t a happy day though for Raider Nation, as the defense was caught with its shorts down. Ever since then the organization seemed to be moving in circles.
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