Doug Gabriel returned a punt to win the game for the visiting Raiders. The win ended a miserable 4-12 season for Oakland one year removed from reaching the Super Bowl.
Curiously, the Raider quarterback performances that day make JaMarcus Russell look like Joe Montana. Rick Mirer and Tee Martin combined to complete six of 22 passes with zero touchdowns and one interception for the grand total of 35 yards (Actually, JaMarcus may be quite envious of those stats).
At the time we all thought that the post-Super Bowl season of 2003 was a
one off for the Silver and Black. The mighty Raiders will surely be winning and competing again in quick time. The Raiders' head coach at the time, Bill Callaghan, said that the Raiders were “ the dumbest team in America."
Surely, the only way was up.
Events have actually deteriorated greatly since that infamous comment.
Six years, 13 consecutive defeats against San Diego and the writer’s complete loss of hair later the Oakland Raiders have still that Gabriel punt return to thank for the
last time they defeated the Chargers.
The last time Oakland beat their California rivals I had a full, bountiful head of hair. I am not blaming Al Davis and the Raiders entirely, but little did I know back in 2003 that that would be the last time I would witness a win over San Diego with hair.
Essentially I have gone from having hair to rival Troy Polamalu to a modern day incarnation of Theo Kojak.
The Raiders and their miserable efforts of the last six years have most certainly contributed in a small way to this follicle challenged situation that I now present to the world on a daily basis.
The question that now arises is will I have a full set of teeth the next time the Raiders beat the Chargers? Or will I still have 20/20 vision?
Given the gross ineptitude so far this season from JaMarcus Russell and Tom Cable and given the unforgiving perennial incompetence of Raider management the question surely must be will my grandchildren have hair the next time the Raiders beat the Chargers.