Oakland Raiders: The 5 Most Memorable Moments in Al Davis's Career
Al Davis turns 82 years old on July 4, 2011. In 1972, he became the new managing general partner of the Oakland Raiders, with most of the control over team operations.
Lately, Davis has been known for his world famous press conferences where he talks about why he has fired recent coaches. The young generation of today may not fully understand what Davis has done for the game of football and the NFL.
Davis is the only person in the world today who can say he's been a commissioner of the league, a head coach, a general manager and owner of a professional football team.
Let's take a look at five of the most memorable moments in Al Davis's career.
Head Coach Al Davis
In 1962, Al Davis was named head coach of the Oakland Raiders. At the time, Davis was 33 years old and was the youngest person in the league to hold that position.
That could be one of the biggest reasons he has fallen in love with young head coaches like Jon Gruden, Mike Shanahan, Lane Kiffin and John Madden.
Davis had fallen in love with the deep ball which is still famous today. In his first year as head coach of the Raiders, he led the team to a winning record—their first in franchise history.
Al Davis Gains Control of Oakland Raiders.
In 1972, Davis became the managing general partner and was given most of the control over the Raiders.
He ran the football aspects of the Raiders since 1966 which is the longest running streak in the league. The Raiders of today are built in the same way Davis built them when he first owned the team.
He loves players with speed, size, strength and more speed. He drafts players from small schools and surprises a lot of people with his picks.
His gaining complete control of football operations was a big deal because that led the Raiders to become one of the best franchises in league history.
Super Bowl Title
On January 9th, 1977 Davis won his first Super Bowl as the owner of the Oakland Raiders.
He won it with John Madden as the head coach. Ken Stabler was the quarterback for the Raiders, and Fred Biletnikoff was named the MVP of the game.
This Super Bowl wouldn't be his last as he won two more shortly after that, but surely, the first Super Bowl is always a favorite moment.
Hall of Fame Induction
Al Davis was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1992. Davis always knew he was a major part of the NFL, and this enshrinement made it official.
This induction solidified everything Davis had done for the NFL and football. As the AFL commissioner he competed against the NFL and helped build a league so strong that that NFL had to merge with it.
As a young head coach, he led the Raiders to their first winning record ever as a franchise and the biggest single season turnaround for a team at that time.
He won three championships as an owner of the Raiders and has been to the Super Bowl in every decade except the 1990s.
His Hall of Fame induction made life sweet for Al Davis.
Al Davis has been a renegade for most of his life. Other teams hated playing the Raiders because of the way they played. Many say Davis created the Raiders in his image with a "take no prisoners" approach. He wanted his team to be one of the most feared teams in the league.
The AFL-NFL merger came at a time when Davis was the commissioner of the AFL. The NFL noticed that the AFL was taking a lot of its talent away so they felt they had to do something. The NFL proceeded to call every owner of the AFL teams to find out if they would be interested in a merger.
Davis did not know about these calls at the time. The two leagues ended up merging which in the long run turned out to be a great thing for Davis and the Raiders. They are now one of the most recognizable teams in the most popular league in America.
Davis has plenty left to give to the league. Expect more from Davis and the Raiders in 2011 and beyond.