Iron sharpens iron
There is a saying: Iron sharpens iron. It means so much to me because the environments from which I draw inspiration include people, places, books, videos, and more.
The Oakland Raiders can only be as great as they have the potential of being if they do as Al Davis and others have done. Study the opponents. Study themselves and the play book.
Eyes, Ears, and more
There are several ways to absorb information. The eyes and ears are what most people use. Others, like a man named Earl who was blinded by a shotgun wound in a small Southeast town, lost his vision during his adult years. He would enter the college classroom with his beautiful dog named Niko, and he would ask about other students. He listened and learned from the echo in the room, and from the scents he could discern.
The broad application of the ways of knowing is what is needed on the playing field. A keen sense of interpretation of the moves, speed, strategies, and more is needed.
Study, emulate and out-perform your role model
Some of these things can be learned from the study of films and videos. It's called doing your homework. I ask my students at the beginning of each class, especially the Calculus class, "Did you do your homework?"
Then I show them the raw data or the finished articles or books I may have finished since the last time I saw them. Serving as a role model for the expectation I set for them is a reasonable responsibility if I desire to inspire them to be better than I am.
So, a coach or teacher should expect the player, protege, or student to do better than he or she has done.
Take it to the limit
Do not limit those who you coach to do only as you say do. Inspire them to go beyond your expectation and to do greater things than you were able to do if you held a similar position as theirs in your foundational years.
Sir Isaac Newton said it so well when he spoke of the French mathematician and philosopher who taught him: "If I have seen farther than others, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants."
The expectation is that the young Oakland Raiders will stand on the shoulders of the senior Oakland Raiders who set records, won championships and Super Bowls. The seniors had the drive and stamina to come through during the last few moments of historical games.
The young Oakland Raiders must practice, study, focus and be fiercely determined to exceed the accomplishments of their "football forefathers."
And during the course of history, there have been those who are so focused and determined to win that a force that transcends what many do not understand comes forth and helps to get those "miraculous moments" in NFL history.
So, Tom Cable must continue to understand the vision and stamina of an 81-years-young Al Davis. The team must know and understand both historical and contemporary information on the NFL game.
The Oakland Raiders must do their homework—daily. They must "ora et labora" which means study and pray (or focus and concentrate). They must be totally prepared.
Preparation + Opportunity = Luck
Finally, as Seneca once said in a paraphrase, "When preparation meets opportunity, that is luck." If, in fact, opportunity comes, and the Oakland Raiders are not fully prepared, then their outcomes will not change.
If, however, they respond to the "call to action" of the Raider Nation, they prepare, and then when opportunity occurs, the victories will come and a shift in destiny will be manifest.
Go Raiders! Do your homework! And, remember that what goes in during the preparation stage is what comes out on the playing field. Yes, too, it is also possible to get more than you put in and those are the miraculous moments recorded in Oakland Raiders history.