Commitment To Excellence; Tom Flores; Head Coach? Forgotten Man?

silvernblack209 blackContributor IJanuary 17, 2010

LOS ANGELES - SEPTEMBER 28: Head coach Tom Flores and his Los Angeles Raiders prepare for battle against the San Diego Chargers during a game at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on September 28, 1986 in Los Angeles, California.  The Raiders won 17-13. (Photo by George Rose/Getty Images)
George Rose/Getty Images

Some people may wonder why am I writing about Tom Flores? Well I will keep it simple and short.  For one, he is the last raiders coach we won a superbowl with, and while we continue to speculate about our head coach and whether or not he will be here, I say perhaps our best head coach candidate is right here under our noses now.  Art Shell got another chance didn't he? Perhaps it was out of desperation that Shell did, nonetheless, why not has Al Davis given Tom Flores a shot again? Is he incompetent? Is he a horrible coach, play caller, lack experience? Don't I hear raider fans complaining about how we want a superbowl caliber coach?  Yet he is right here! in fact he probably has a ton of coaching experience Here are some interesting factoids;

"Thomas R. "Tom" Flores (born March 21, 1937 in Fresno, California) is a retired American collegiate and professional football quarterback and former professional coach. Flores and Mike Ditka are the only two people in the NFL history to win Super Bowls as a player, as an assistant coach, and as a head coach. [1] Flores was also the first Hispanic head coach in league history. Flores is currently a radio announcer.

Football player

Flores played quarterback for two seasons at Fresno City College beginning in 1955. He was active off the field as well serving on the Student Council as well as President of the Associated Men's Students. He received an academic scholarship to study at the College (now University) of the Pacific. Flores graduated from the University of the Pacific in 1958, but was unable to find a job in professional football. He was cut by the Calgary Stampeders of the CFL in 1958, and then by the Washington Redskins of the National Football League (NFL) in 1959. In 1960 Flores finally landed a position as a quarterback with the American Football League's Oakland Raiders, who began play in 1960 as a charter member of the league. Flores became the first Hispanic quarterback in American professional football. He became the Raiders' starting quarterback early in the 1960 season.

Flores had his most productive season in 1966. Although he completed only 49.3 percent of his attempts, he passed for 2,638 yards and 24 touchdowns in 14 games. Oakland traded him to the Buffalo Bills in 1967. After serving primarily as a backup, he was released by the Bills and in 1969 signed with the Kansas City Chiefs, where he was backup to Len Dawson on the Chiefs' World Championship team. He retired as a player after the 1970 season. He was one of only twenty players who were with the AFL for its entire ten-year existence. He is the fifth-leading passer, all-time, in the AFL.

Coaching career

Flores is a member of the Sid Gillman coaching tree. After stints as an assistant coach in Buffalo and Oakland (he won a Super Bowl XI ring as an Assistant Coach under John Madden), Flores became the Raiders' head coach in 1979, following John Madden's retirement. Flores then became the NFL's first minority head coach to win a Super Bowl, winning twice - Super Bowl XV with the Oakland Raiders and Super Bowl XVIII with the Los Angeles Raiders, the latter victory being the only such in the history of NFL football in L.A.

After a 5–10 finish to the 1987 season, Flores moved to the Raiders' front office, but left after just one year to become the president and general manager of the Seattle Seahawks. He returned to coaching as the Seahawks head coach in 1992, but returned to the front office following three disappointing seasons. Flores resigned from the Seahawks in 1994 following Paul Allen's purchase of the Seahawks.

Flores left Pro Football with a lifetime coaching record of 97–87 (52.7%), as well as an 8-3 playoff record, and with two Super Bowl victories. Flores, Jimmy Johnson, Bill Parcells and George Seifert are the only eligible coaches with two such victories, who have not been selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Post-coaching career

Tom Flores can be heard with Greg Papa on KSFO (560 AM) during the radio broadcasts of Raiders games.

Sanger High School's Football stadium is named "Tom Flores Stadium" in honor of Tom who was a graduate of Sanger High School ("

Certainly, he has the credentials, heck he is only one of two people to have won a superbowl as player, assistant coach and head coach, that's pretty impressive if you ask me.  Maybe an experienced coach, with Flore's unique perspective as a player, etc., is the head coach the raiders lack?  What do you guys think? Could Coach Flores ignite that fire, hunger, re-dedication to a commitment to excellence? Is he the missing ingredient in the recipe for success? the formula? the magic potion that can sprinkle his passion, love and determination to his players? Does he deserve a chance or is he another washed up antiqued bed and breakfast coach?  In my book coach Flores is a proven champion who is very special to me and should be to all raider fans.  I certainly say he should get another chance.  Perhaps he can inspire our young team to what it takes to once again be champions.  I leave you with this quote by coach Flores;  "A total commitment is paramount to reaching the ultimate in performance."