Whatever Happened to the Good Old Days?: The Denver Broncos and Oakland Raiders

Josh GilchristContributor IDecember 16, 2009

OAKLAND, CA - DECEMBER 13:  Shane Lechler #9 of the Oakland Raiders kicks the the ball during their game against the Washington Redskins at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on December 13, 2009 in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

I talk a lot of trash and make a lot of jokes (bad ones at that) about the Oakland Raiders. While I do think that they have some scumbag fans, I would never claim that their fan base is any worse than that of a lot of other NFL teams.

Sure, the Black Hole probably deserves its reputation as a house of ill repute, but every stadium has its share of drunken lunatics with middle school maturity levels.

“I am going to pick a fight with an opposing fan because all of my peers will think I am funny,” says the foaming-at-the-mouth lunatic.

I will never like the Raiders. I think I have cheered for them twice in my life. However, I would like to see them return to competitiveness.

Let’s face it, the NFL is probably better when the Raiders are playing well. They are one of the elite teams when it comes to how much people love to hate them.

The fans who love the Raiders are extremely passionate about their team, and those who hate them have an equal level of hostility toward the bad boys in black.

Right now, there really isn’t much to hate about the Raiders. All of us Broncos fans have been able to do the past few seasons is laugh and laugh and laugh.

It was fun when the Raiders had a couple of bad seasons and Raider nation had to eat some humble pie. But, now, I am actually starting to pity the faithful fans of the Oakland Raiders.

Al Davis is running this franchise into the grave and will probably do so until he runs himself into the grave.

I mean, come on, the dude needs to give up on the JaMarcus Russell project, he also needs to give a coach longer than one and a half seasons before he fires him, and he needs to stop drafting no-name receivers and kickers with Oakland’s first-round picks.

What I am saying is that I want to hate the Raiders again. I am tired of the Denver/Oakland matchups being unexciting.

This is not to say that Oakland is never capable of upsetting the Broncos, especially considering that the Raiders have upset both the Eagles and the Steelers this year.

Oakland also won a game in Denver last year that they probably shouldn’t have won. Usually, though, Denver is expected to win, and it is no big deal if they do.

I long for a return of the good old days when Broncos vs. Raiders was one of the fiercest rivalries in the NFL and winning the game was a big deal for both sides, not just something taken for granted.

I get a lot of comments and feedback from Raiders fans online. I have also come across a lot Raiders fans in my day.

All I can say about everyone of you is that your commitment to your team is admirable and I respect those of you who haven’t jumped ship. We may never get along, but hopefully we can renew the intensity of the rivalry sooner than later.