Saturday, August 04, 2007


Raider football

Yes I am a Raider fan. I have been since they were good in the 70's.

Historical Moments:
1960: Originally slated to play in Minnesota the AFL's 8th original franchise was forced to look for another home after a deal with Minnesota fell through. After briefly flirting with Atlanta it was decided to put the new team in the Bay Area. The Oakland Raiders, led by Coach Eddie Erdelatz played their first game ever at San Francisco's Kezar Stadium on September 11th where they lost to the Houston Oilers by a score of 37-22. Two weeks later in a rematch at Houston the Raiders got their first win by a score of 14-13. The Raiders would finish their first season in financial peril with a 6-8 record.

1961: After losing their first 2 games by a combined score of 99-0 Eddie Erdelatz is fired and replaced by Marty Feldman. Under Feldman the Raiders would not do much better winning just twice on the way to a woeful 2-12 season.

1962: After playing their first 2 seasons in San Francisco stadiums (Kezar Stadium and Candlestick Park), the Raiders finally find a home in Oakland, as they agree to play in a converted high school stadium named after an undertaker Frank Youell Field. However, the change of address did not help as they lost their first 5 games before Coach Marty Feldman is fired. Under his replacement Red Conkright the Raiders would continue to struggle losing their next 8 before beating the Boston Patriots 20-0 in Oakland in the season finale to finish with an awful 1-13 record.

1963: The Raiders hire San Diego Chargers assistant Al Davis as their new Coach and General Manager. His first move is to give the team a new look, as they take the field in silver and black uniforms. The new look would work wonders as the Raiders won their first game over the Oilers in Houston 24-13. The Raiders would also win their 2nd game a week later, but a 4 game losing streak would quickly have them crashing back to earth. However, the Raiders would recover and would win their last 8 games to finish with a 10-4 record, as Clem Daniels rushed for 1,099 yards. However, the Raiders would have to settle for 2nd place, despite sweeping the first place Chargers.

1964: The Raiders stumble out of the gate losing their first 5 games. With all hopes of the playoffs gone the Raiders would play solid football the rest of the way only losing 2 of their remaining 9 games to finish with a 5-7-2 record.

1965: In their final season of football at Frank Youell Field the Raiders play solid football most of the season and compile an 8-5-1 record, good enough for 2nd place in the AFL West. Following the season Coach Al Davis would depart to take of the post of AFL Commissioner. Davis would be replaces by John Rauch as Coach.

1966: Al Davis would have a short 3-month tenure as AFL commissioner, but his actions helped cause earth shattering changes to the landscape of pro-football. Taking office in April Davis had gotten half of the NFL's top Quarterbacks to agree to join the NFL. This forced the NFL to once and for all view the AFL as a legitimate league, and led to a merger, that would bring both leagues together with a common draft and a year-end championship game. Davis would resign in July and return to the front office of the Raiders, as the AFL had become part of the NFL. After splitting their first 2 games at home the Raiders opened the new state of the art Oakland Alameda County Coliseum with a 32-10 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs before a crowd of 50, 746. The Raiders would have another solid season but could not do better than 2nd place with an 8-5-1 record.

1967: Prior to the start of the season the Raiders acquire QB Daryle Lamonica from the Buffalo Bills, for Tom Flores in a trade of single callers. Lamonica would prove to be the final piece of the puzzle and he won the AFL Player of the Year while passing for 3,228 yards and 30 TD passes, as the Raiders dominated the AFL on the way to a 13-1 season in which they roiled over opponents by a score of 468-233. In the AFL Championship Game the Raiders continued to roll destroying the Houston Oilers 40-7 at Oakland to advance to the AFL-NFL Championship Game.

Super Bowl II: In the 2nd AFL-NFL Championship Game the Raiders faced the powerful Green Bay Packers in Miami. The Packers came into the game knowing that Head Coach Vince Lombardi was about top step down, and played their top level of football. A level even at the top of their game the Raiders could not touch; as they fell 33-14, in a game that was over almost form the start.

1968: The Raiders get off to a fast start again winning their first 4 games, before back-to-back losses knocked them off their first place perch. The Raiders would win their next 3 games but appeared to be heading to defeat trailing the New York Jets 32-29 in the final minute of a game at Oakland. Even NBC thought the game was over, so they switched it off in favor of the movie "Heidi". However, Daryle Lamonica drove the Raiders 77 yards on 2 plays to take a 36-32 lead. On the ensuing kickoff the Jets would fumble at the goaline allowing the Raiders to recover and win the game 43-32. However, thanks to NBC's shortsighted decision nobody at home saw it. An angry out cry would be heard from football fans all over the country, as the game was forever known as "The Heidi Game". The Raiders would go on to finish with a 12-2 record, earning a first place tie with Kansas City Chiefs. In the divisional playoff at Oakland the Raiders would easily beat the Chiefs by a score 41-6 to earn a trip to the AFL Championship. In the AFL Championship Game the Raiders found themselves in a rematch with the Jets in New York. The Raiders would fall behind early, but once again mounted a comeback to take a 23-20 lead in the 4th Quarter. However, Joe Namath would quickly lead the Jets back down the field to take a 27-23lead on a pass to Don Maynard. The Raiders would have one last chance but when Johnny Sample intercepted a Daryle Lamonica pass at midfield the Raiders fate was sealed. Following the game Coach John Rauch would retire, he would be replaced by a young 33-year old assistant named John Madden.

1969: The Raiders would dominate the AFL again in the final season the two leagues were kept apart, winning their 3rd straight Division Title with a record of 12-1-1. However, an extra tier of playoff was added with the 2nd place teams qualifying for the playoffs. In the first round the Raiders easily destroyed the Houston Oilers 56-7 at Oakland to advance to their 3rd straight Championship Game. In the AFL Championship Game in Oakland the Raiders were matched up against their fiercest rivals the Kansas City Chiefs who they defeated twice on the way to capturing the Division Title. However, it would not be the Raiders day as the Chiefs extracted revenge in a 17-7 win in the final pure AFL game.

1970: The Raiders did not start the season out on the right foot going winless through their first 3 games. However, they would quickly turn things around going unbeaten in their next 7. In the next to last game of the season the Raiders defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 20-6 to sew up their 4th straight division title. The 8-4-2 Raiders faced the Miami Dolphins in Oakland, getting revenge for an early season loss by beating the Dolphins 21-14. However, in the AFC Championship Game the Raiders season is ended with a 27-17 loss to the Colts in Baltimore.

1971: After dropping their first game to the Patriots in New England, the Raiders roll off a 9-game unbeaten streak and take over the top spot in the AFC West again. However a 3-game losing streak would not only cost the Raiders first place, but it also cost them a playoff spot as the Raiders season ended in disappointment at 8-4-2.

1972: After playing mediocre football for most of the first half, the Raiders win their final 6 games to capture their 5th division Championship in 6 years with a solid 10-3-1 record. In the Divisional Playoffs at Pittsburgh the Raiders and Steelers locked horns in a defensive struggle. With the Steelers leading 6-0 with less tan a minute left QB Kenny Stabler subbing for Daryle Lamonica scored a TD on a 30-yard bootleg to give the Raiders a 7-6 lead. The Raiders appeared to have the game won with the Steelers facing 4th and 10; Jack Tatum deflected a pass away from John Fuqua. However, the ball would never hit the ground out of nowhere Franco Harris caught it and ran it in for a TD that dealt the Raiders as stunning 13-7 loss.

1973: After losing their season opener to the Vikings in Minnesota the Raiders play their home opener in nearby Berkley against the Miami Dolphins who enter the game on an 18-game winning streak. The Raiders defense was extra fierce that afternoon ending the Dolphins streak with a 12-7 win. However, trough 10 games the Raiders were still struggling at 5-4-1. The Raiders would finish the season strong winning their last 4 games including a 21-17 win in the season finale over the Denver Broncos that won the AFC West with a 9-4-1 record. In the Divisional Playoff in Oakland the Raiders would get revenge for the "Immaculate Reception" with a convincing 33-14 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers. However the Raiders season would end a week later with a 27-10 loss to the Dolphins in Miami in the AFC Championship Game.

1974: After losing their first game 21-20 to the Bills in Buffalo, the Raiders run off a dominating 9-game winning streak, on the way to cruising to their 7th Division Title in 8 years with a 12-2 record as QB Kenny Stabler won both the Offensive Player of the Year and NFL MVP. In the Divisional Playoffs the Raiders and Miami Dolphins battled back and forth all day as the Dolphins took a 26-21 lead with 2 minutes left. However, Kenny Stabler would use his legs and arm to snake the Raiders up to the Dolphins 8 yard line with 30 seconds left. One 1st and Goal Stabler appeared in trouble as he was flushed of the pocket, but instead of going down with a back breaking sack Stabler got rid of the ball. The ball seemed to float through a sea of Dolphins defenders before Clarence Davis made a juggling catch to give the Raiders a 28-26 lead. The Raiders would go on to seal the game on Phil Villapiano interception. However, a week later in the AFC Championship Game the Raiders would be stunned by the Pittsburgh Steelers 24-13 at Oakland.

1975: The Raiders get the season started out the right foot by beating the Dolphins 31-21 in a Monday Night showdown in Miami that ended the Dolphins 31-game home winning streak. The Raiders would go on to cruise to another division title with an 11-3 record. In the final game of the season PK George Blanda playing in his final game scored his 2,000th point becoming the first player in NFL history to score 2,000 points. A week later the Raiders would avenge an early season loss by beating the Cincinnati Bengals 31-28 in the Divisional Playoffs at Oakland. However a week later the Raiders would lose a defensive war to the Steelers 16-10 on a snowy day in Pittsburgh with the AFC Championship on the line.

1976: Prior to the start of the season Al Davis gained sole control of the franchise when Wayne Valley sold all of his shares. In a season opening showdown with Pittsburgh Steelers in Oakland S George Atkinson knock Steelers WR Lynn Swann out for 2 weeks with a helmet-to-helmet hit, as the Raiders won 31-28. Following the game Steelers coach Chuck Noll called Atkinson a criminal leading to a lawsuit. That game would set the tone for the Raiders seemed even meaner and nastier then previous seasons, cruising to their 9th Division Title in 10 years with a 13-1 record. However, in the playoffs the Raiders appeared to be in trouble trailing the New England Patriots 21-10 entering the 4th Quarter in Oakland. The Raiders would cut the deficit to 21-17 with a TD early in the 4th. However, they appeared on the ropes again when the Pats had the ball 3 and inches on the Raiders 30. However, the Pats would jump off sides, and Phil Villapiano would make a key drive stopping play, which was made even bigger when the Pats missed a FG. The Raiders would drive down to the Pats 27 but appeared stalled before a key pass interference penalty put the Raiders deep into Pats territory. The Raiders would go on to cash it in and won the game by a score of 24-21. In the AFC Championship Game the Raiders would take advantage of an injury depleted Steelers team beating them 24-7 in Oakland for a trip to the Super Bowl.

Super Bowl XI: The Raiders were finally back in the Super Bowl facing the Minnesota Vikings in Pasadena before a crowd dominated by Raiders fans. The game would go scoreless through the 1st Quarter as the Raiders survived a block punt by recovering a fumble at the goaline. The Raiders would dominate the 2nd Quarter taking a 16-0 lead as the raiders defense continued to cause turnovers. The game would go into the 4th Quarter with Raiders leading 19-7. The Raiders would extend their lead on Pete Banaszak's 2nd TD of the game. On the next series they would seal the game when Willie Brown ran back a interception 75 yards to seal the game. The Vikings would add a cosmetic TD for the 32-14 final as WR Fred Biletnikoff was named the game's MVP.

1977: The Raiders would get off to another fast start winning their first 4 games on the way to an 11-3 season. However, they would have to settle for a Wild Card as they lose the division by a game to the Denver Broncos. In the Divisional Playoffs in Baltimore the Raiders would battle the Colts in a back and forth game all day. The game would go through an entire overtime period tied at 31, before Kenny Stabler hit TE Dave Casper on a post pattern for the game winning TD 43 second into the 2nd OT. However, the Raiders reign would end with a heartbreaking 20-17 loss to the Broncos in Denver for the AFC Championship.

1978: The Raiders rough and tumble image suffered a black eye when CB Jack Tatum hit New England Patriots WR Darryl Stingley hard in the back during a preseason game at Oakland. The hit would shatter Stingley's spinal cord leaving him in a wheel chair for life. When the season started the raiders maintained their dominant form despite a terrible interception plagued season from QB Kenny Stabler, as they sat at 8-4 through 12 games. However, the struggles would catch up to the as they dropped 3 straight to fall out of the playoff race. The Raiders needed a 27-20 win over the Minnesota Vikings in their final game just to assure a winning record at 9-7. The season's highlight was a stunning last second win over the Chargers in San Diego where the Raiders fumble kept rolling toward the endzone where TE Dave Casper fell on the ball. Following the season Coach John Madden would retire sighting concerns after posting a career record of 103-32-7. Madden would go on to become one of the voice of eth NFL on Television and videos games achieving more fame and fan fare after retirement then he did while coaching.

1979: Replacing John Madden as head Coach was Tom Flores, a Raider QB for the early days. Under Flores the Raiders would play mediocre football for most of the season sitting at 6-6 through 12 games. However, they would find themselves in playoff position entering the final week of the season after a 3-game winning streak. However, a 29-24 loss at home to the Seattle Seahawks would cost the Raiders a playoff spot as their season ended with a 9-7 record.

1980: Prior to the start of the season Al Davis announced plans to move the Raiders for Oakland to Los Angels. However, NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle blocked the move by filing a restring order. He would even try to get the Al Davis removed as owner, as the case went to the courts. Still playing in Oakland the Raiders entered the season with a new QB after acquiring Dan Pastorini from the Houston Oilers for Kenny Stabler. However Pastorini struggled and the Raiders got off to a 2-3 when Pastorini was injured and replaced by Jim Plunkett. Plunkett proved to be the right fit for the Raiders offense as the team played solid football the rest of the season compiling an 11-5 record, and qualifying for the playoffs as a Wild Card. In the Wild Card Game the Raiders would beat the Houston Oilers 27-7 at Oakland as the Raiders defense picked former teammate Kenny Stabler off twice. Playing in freezing weather with temperature reading 30 degrees below zero the Raiders stunned the Browns 14-12 in a defensive struggle in Cleveland. In the AFC Championship Game in San Diego the game would be a shoot out as the Raiders stunned the Chargers 34-27 to become the first AFC Wild Card to make the Super Bowl.

Super Bowl XV: The Raiders who were involved in a lawsuit against the NFL were in the Super Bowl in New Orleans facing the Philadelphia Eagles as NFL officials were all but openly rooting for the Eagles. The Raiders would jump on the board first as Jim Plunkett hit Cliff Branch on a short TD pass midway through the first Quarter. The Raiders would take a stranglehold on the game at the end of the quarter when Plunkett hit Kenny King on an 80-yard TD strike. The Eagles would score a FG in the 2nd, but the Raiders defense would take over the game as Rod Martin picked Eagles QB Ron Jaworski off 3 times. The Raiders would go on to win the game 27-10 as Jim Plunkett was named the game's MVP with 3 TD passes. The win led to one of the most uncomfortable moments in NFL history as Commissioner Pete Rozelle was forced to present Al Davis the man he was involved in a legal wrestling match with the Lombardi Trophy.

1981: With QB Marc Wilson taking over for an inured, and ineffective Jim Plunkett the Raiders struggled with mediocrity all season as their record 16-year streak of winning seasons ended with a 7-9 record as the lame duck Raiders finally won the go ahead to move to Los Angels following the season. In their final game at Oakland the Raiders would fall 23-6 to the Chicago Bears.

Los Angeles Years (1982-1994)

1982: The Raiders would start the season with 2 road wins, but their debut in Los Angeles was put on hold when the NFL Players embarked on a 2-month strike. When the season resumed on November 22nd the Raiders beat the San Diego Chargers 28-24 in a Monday Night at the historic Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. After a loss to the Bengals in Cincinnati the Raiders won their next 2 before a showdown with the cross-town Rams, at the Coliseum. The Raiders would win the shootout 37-31 in a sold out Coliseum that was the first Million Dollar Gate in NFL history. The Raiders would go on to get the top seed in the AFC Playoff Tournament with an 8-1 record, as RB Marcus Allen won Offensive Rookie of the Year honors. In the first round the Raiders, easily dispatch the Cleveland Browns by a score of 27-10. However, in the next round the Raiders are plagued by turnovers in a stunning 17-14 loss to the New York Jets.

1983: Prior to the season the Raiders added salt in the wound of the NFL by winning a $35 million antitrust suit against the NFL for blocking the move to Los Angeles. To sure up holes in the secondary the Raiders acquire CB Mike Haynes from the New England Patriots. With a balanced offense the Raiders get off to a quick start winning their first 4 games before losing a 37-35 shootout to the Redskins in Washington, that was in many eye's the game of the season. The Raiders would go on to cruise to another AFC West title with a record of 12-4, despite 2 losses to the Seattle Seahawks. In the Divisional Playoffs at the Coliseum the Raiders would maul the Pittsburgh Steelers 38-10. The win set up a rematch with Seahawks in Los Angeles with the AFC Championship Game on the line. The Raiders would jump out to a 20-0 halftime lead behind the running of Marcus Allen, as the Raiders beat the Seahawks 30-14 to earn a trip to the Super Bowl.

Super Bowl XVIII: In a rematch of a memorable early season game the Raiders faced the Washington Redskins in Tampa with the Lombardi Trophy on the line. The Raiders would get on the board first when Derrick Jensen blocked a punt for a TD early in the 1st Quarter. Late in the 2nd Quarter the score was 14-3 when the Raiders grabbed a stranglehold on the game as Jack Squirek intercepted, and returned an attempted screen pass 5 yards for TD. In their regular season meeting in a similar situation the Redskins scored on the same play this time Squirek and the Raiders were not fooled taking a 21-3 halftime lead. The 2nd half would be the Marcus Allen show, as the Raiders star RB simply took over scoring 2 TDs in the 3rd Quarter including a 75-yard TD run to seal the game on the quarter's final play. Allen would go on to win the game's MVP as the Raiders won the 3rd Lombardi Trophy by a score of 38-9. As always there was a gleam in the eye of Al Davis as he received the trophy from Commissioner Pete Rozelle, the man he beat in court.

1984: The Raiders would get off to a fast start winning their first 4 games and 7 out of their first 8 overall. However a costly 3-game losing streak would drop the Raiders out of first, as they went on to settle for the Wild Card with an 11-5 record. In the wild Card Game the Raiders would fall to Seahawks 13-7 in Seattle.

1985: Led by Marcus Allen who won both the Offensive Player of the Year and NFL MVP, the Raiders recapture the AFC West by winning their last 6 games to finish with a 12-4 record. However, in the Divisional Playoffs the Raiders would have a rash of turnovers in a stunning 27-20 home loss to the New England Patriots.

1986: The Raiders would stumble out of the gate losing their first 3 games, as RB Marcus Allen plays through injuries at the start of the season. However the injuries would become controversial when Al Davis publicly stated Allen was faking the injuries. However amidst the billowing storm the Raiders would turn their season around winning 8 of their next 9. However the season would go down in flames after a Marcus Allen fumble is returned all the way in an overtime loss to the Philadelphia Eagles at the Coliseum, further agitating the troubles between Davis and Allen. The loss would be the start of a season ending 4-game losing streak as the Raiders finished with a disappointing 8-8 record.

1987: The troubles between Marcus Allen and Al Davis only get more heated as the Raiders sign former Heisman Winner Bo Jackson. However, they would not have Jackson full time as he chose to split time between baseball with the Kansas City Royals and football with the Raiders. With baseball season wrapping up Allen helped lead the Raiders to a 2-0 start before a Players strike led to the use of replacement players. However Davis insisted Allen cross the line and when he didn't the bad blood between the two got worse. After winning their first game the Raiders scabs would lose their next 2. When the regulars returned the losing streak continued. The losing streak would finally end with a Monday Night showdown in Seattle where Bo Jackson ran over Brian Bozwroth and the Seahawks in a 37-14 win. However, it was just a minor reprieve as the Raiders lost their last 3 and finished with a woeful 5-10 record. After the season Al Davis, unhappy with the passionless crowds in Los Angeles began to make overtures that he wanted to move again. Meanwhile Coach Tom Flores would resign after a successful 9-year tenure.

1988: Under new coach Mike Shanahan the Raiders would play mediocre football all season finishing with a 7-9 record, as newly acquired QB Jay Schroeder struggles with turnovers, and Marcus Allen is under utilized with 2nd half arrival of Bo Jackson. Following the season Al Davis would flirt with a move back to Oakland, but agreed to stay in Los Angeles after renovations were made at the Coliseum.

1989: After winning their season opener 40-14 over the San Diego Chargers, at the Coliseum the Raiders drop their next 3 games leading to the firing of Coach Mike Shanahan. Under new Coach Art Shell the Raiders would play better football right away winning 4 of Shell's first 5 games. In becoming coach Art Shell became the first black coach in the modern day NFL. The Raiders needed a win in their final game to have a shot at a playoff spot. However, the Raiders season would end with a 34-17 loss to the Giants in New York, as the Raiders finished with an 8-8 record, as Marcus Allen only carries the ball 69 times.

1990: With Marcus Allen becoming a vital part of the offense again with 13 Touchdowns as the Raiders win 6 of their first 7 games. The Raiders would go on to capture the AFC West with a 12-4 record as Allen and Bo Jackson provide a potent 1-2 punch in the backfield. In the Divisional Playoffs the Raiders would beat the Cincinnati Bengals 21-10 at the Coliseum. However, RB Bo Jackson would suffer a career ending hip injury late in the 3rd Quarter when David Fulcher literal rips the hip out its socket in a tackle from behind on the sidelines. Playing without Bo in bone chilling weather the Raiders season is ended with a 51-3 rout at the hands of the Bills in the AFC Championship game in Buffalo.

1991: Al Davis further enflames the ire of Marcus Allen by signing Plan B Free agent Roger Craig, as Allen seems trapped on the Raiders being under used. The Raiders probably could have used Allen as they lost their last 3 games of the season. However, with a record of 9-7 the Raiders still managed to sneak into the playoffs. However, their season would end quickly with a 10-6 loss to the Chiefs in Kansas City in the Wild Card Game.

1992: Marcus Allen continues to be buried on the bench as the Raiders get off to a miserable start losing their first 4 games. The Raiders would not be able to overcome the start never reaching the .500 mark, while finishing with a 7-9 record. Following the season Marcus Allen given the opportunity of true free agency signed with Kansas City Chiefs, in an attempt at revenge against Al Davis, who orchestrated his long benching.

1993: With newly acquired QB Jeff Hosteller the Raiders play solid football all season and qualify for the playoffs with a 10-6 record, along the way Raiders won several close games in the 4th Quarter. One of those nail bitters was a season finale 33-30 overtime win over the Denver Broncos at the Coliseum which decided home field for their Wild Card playoff match up. The Wild Card Game would not be as close as the Raiders cruised to an impressive 42-24 win. A week later in the Divisional Playoff the Raiders held a lead early in the 4th Quarter over the Bills in Buffalo. However, the Bills would rally and pull out a 29-23 win to end the Raiders season.

1994: The Raiders would stumble out of the gate losing 3 of their first 4 games. The Raiders would recover and entered the final game of the season in Los Angeles on a 3-game winning streak, needing just a win over the Kansas City Chiefs to make the playoffs. However, the Raiders offense could not get it going in a 19-9 loss that ended their season with a 9-7 record. Following the season Coach Art Shell would be fired, and replaced by Mike White. However, the big news of the off-season was a move. After 13 unsatisfying years in Los Angeles the Raiders announced they were moving back to Oakland, after the city agreed to massive overhaul of the old Oakland Alameda County Coliseum.

Return to Oakland (1995-Present)

1995: On September 3rd the Raiders made a triumph return to Oakland by beating the San Diego Chargers 17-7. The return to Oakland would provide an instant spark as the Raiders playing in front of true and passionate fans in Oakland got off to a fantastic start winning 8 of their first 10 games. However a 34-21 home loss to the Dallas Cowboys would send the Raiders reeling back to earth as they closed the season in disappointing fashion losing their final 6 games to finish with an 8-8 record.

1996: The Raiders stumble out of the gate losing 2 tough road games, before finally winning their first home game against the Jacksonville Jaguars 17-3. The win would be the start of a stretch in which they won 5 out of 6. However, 2 separate 3 game losing streaks in the 2nd half would doom the Raiders to a 7-9 season. Following the season Coach Mike White is fired and replaced by Joe Bugel.

1997: The Raiders stumble out of the gate losing 3 of their first 4 games by a field goal or less. Frustrating losses was the hallmark of the season as the Raiders by uninspired football all season on the way to finishing with a woeful record of 4-12. Following the season Coach Joe Bugel is fired and replaced by Jon Gruden.

1998: Despite playing only mediocre football on the way to an 8-8 season new Coach Jon Gruden, who at 34 is the youngest coach in the NFL becomes an immediate fan favorite with his intensity on the sideline earning the nickname chucky form his players.

1999: The Raiders alternate wins and losses all season on the way to another 8-8 season. However in their season finale the Raiders would get extra satisfaction by knocking the Chiefs out of the playoffs with a come from behind 41-38 win in overtime in Kansas City.

2000: Quarterback has a career season passing for 3,430 yards as the Raiders grabbed control of the AFC West early by winning 10 of their first 12 games. The Raiders would split their last 4 games, but their 12-4 record was good enough to earn their first division title in 10 years and a first round bye. In the Divisional Playoffs the Raiders defense dominated the Miami Dolphins all day on the way to an easy 27-0 victory in the first playoff game in Oakland in 20 years. However, a week later in the AFC Championship Game QB Rich Gannon suffers a rib injury on the first series of the game in a stunning 16-3 loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

2001: To add another weapon to their offense the Raiders sign WR Jerry Rice who holds every major career receiving record. Rice would join long time Raider Tim Brown in 1,000-yard club as the Raiders got off to a terrific start winning 8 of their first 10 games. The Raiders would quickly overcome a stunning home loss to the Arizona Cardinals to clinch the division early with a 10-3 record. However, with home field advantage up in the air the Raiders coasted through their last 3 games losing each and were forced to play in the Wild Card round after a 10-6 season. In the Wild Card Game Jerry Rice showed he was not done yet collecting almost 200 receiving yards in an exciting 38-24 win over the New York Jets in Oakland. A week later the Raiders appeared to be heading for the AFC Championship Game with a 13-10 win over the Patriots in the snow at New England, as they scooped up a Tom Brady fumble with less then 2 minutes left. However, the play was reversed by instant replay thanks to the obscure and controversial tuck rule. The Pats would go on to tie the game, and take the opening drive in overtime deep into Raiders territory where they nailed a game winning FG to pull out a controversial 16-13 win. Following the season Coach Jon Gruden was traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for draft picks after the team was unable to sign him to a contract extension. The reason no contract extension was reached is that Al Davis who felt Gruden was stealing his spotlight wanted reclaim some of the control Gruden had taken away from him in recent years. The Raiders would go on to name Bill Callahan to replace him.

2002: Under new Coach Bill Callahan the Raiders would come flying out of the gate winning their first 4 games behind high powered offense that scored 162 points in their first 4 games. However, the Raiders would suddenly go into a tailspin losing 4 straight games, including 4 in overtime as they sat at the midway point with a mediocre 4-4 record. However, just as suddenly the Raiders would rebound as Jerry Rice collected his 200th career touchdown in a 34-10 win on the road over the Denver Broncos on Monday Night Football. The Monday Night win would be the start of a 5 game winning streak which included another Raiders receiver having a Monday Night Milestone as Tim Brown became just the 3rd WR in NFL history to collect 1,000 career receptions joining Rice, and Cris Carter, as the Raiders beat the New York Jets at home 26-20. After a loss to the Miami Dolphins on the road the Raiders would go on to win the AFC West with a solid 11-5 record as Rich Gannon was named NFL MVP for passing for 4,689 yards, while throwing 26 TD passes to just 10 interceptions. The Raiders, who had earned Home Field advantage in the AFC faced the Jets again in the Division Round of the playoffs after going into halftime tied at 10 the Raiders would pull away in the 4th Quarter, as WR Jerry Porter outshined his 2 Hall of Fame teammates with 123 receiving yards including a 50-yard reception that set up the game breaking TD. Hosting the Tennessee Titans in the AFC Championship Game the veteran Raiders would find themselves behind 17-14 entering the final minutes of the first half. However suddenly the Raiders would catch a break as they r3ecovered a fumbled punt on the Titans 16 to set an up a Rich Gannon TD pass. On the ensuing kickoff the Raiders would catch another break recovering a fumble to set up a Sebastian Janikowski FG to give the Riders a 24-17 halftime lead. In the second half the Raiders would dominate the Titans on the way to a 41-24 win that sent them to their first Super Bowl in 19 years.

Super Bowl XXXVII: Super Bowl week would turn into the "Chucky Circus" as the Raiders faced the Tampa Bay Buccaneers coached by Jon Gruden. Gruden who coached ten Raiders from 1998-2001 had rebuilt the team into a scoring machine that his replacement Bill Callahan helped form into the top offense in the NFL who, were matched up against Gruden's Buccaneers who had the top defense in the NFL. The circus atmosphere would overwhelm Raiders center Barret Robbins who went AWOL the day before the big game in San Diego. Robbins would reappear the morning of the game after a night of drinking in Tijuana, but he would be suspended from the team. At the start of the game it appeared as if the Robbins distraction would not hurt as the Raiders, who took advantage of an interception on the first possession of the game to take an early 3-0 lead. However, the Bucs defense seemed to know what was coming as they red Rich Gannon perfectly intercepting 2 passes and shutting down the Raiders offense completely to take a 20-3 lead into halftime. Things would not get better for the Raiders in the second half as the Bucs extended their lead to 27-3 on a long drive that ate up time in the 3rd Quarter. Now in desperation mode Gannon trying desperately to get the Raiders back into he game would be picked off by Dwight Smith who returned it all the way to extend their lead to 34-3. The Raiders would make a furious attempt at comeback scoring 3 consecutive Touchdowns, to cut the lead to 34-21. However, in the final 2 minutes Gannon would have another 2 interceptions ran back for touchdowns as the Buccaneers won the Super Bowl 48-21.

2003: Coming off their disappointing performance in the Super Bowl the Raiders appeared to be suffering from a hangover as they struggled in their first 4 games winning twice at home and losing twice on the road, but even in their wins they did not play well. Things would take a turn for the worse as the Raiders lost their next 5 while MVP Rich Gannon struggled before being shelved by a season ending shoulder injury in Week 8. Meanwhile a public feud developed between the players and Coach Bill Callahan who was seen at fault for the Raiders poor Super Bowl showing. The Raiders losing streak would end with a 28-18 win over the Minnesota Vikings at home, but it would be a mere moment of relief in a lost season as the Raiders finished with a terrible 4-12 record, the worst season ever for any team coming off a Super Bowl Appearance, as the old veterans who looked like they were still in their prime a season earlier looked like they were ready for the old folks home in 2003. Among the vets with disappointing seasons were Jerry Rice and Tim Brown who each only scored 2 Touchdowns. Following the disastrous season which saw the Raiders finish tied for the worst record in the NFL Coach Bill Callahan is fired and replace by Norv Turner as the Raiders began to make wholesale changes among them releasing veteran Tim Brown the holder of most Raiders receiving records, while strengthening their defense by signing free agent Warren Sapp.

2004: The Norv Turner era would get off to a good start as the Raiders won 2 of their first 3 games. However, in a Week 3 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in which the Raiders got a measure of revenge for their Super Bowl loss with a 30-20, QB Rich Gannon suffers a career ending neck injury. The rest of the season the Raiders would turn to Kerry Collins who would be slow to adapt to the Raiders offense losing his first 5 starts. Along the way the Raiders would deal legendary WR Jerry Rice whose consecutive games with a reception streak ended in a Week 2 win over the Buffalo Bills at 274, to the Seattle Seahawks. Collins would play better as the season wore on but the Raiders would still struggle finishing in last place with a 5-11 record. Following the season the Raiders would acquire All-Pro WR Randy Moss in a blockbuster deal with the Minnesota Vikings.

2005: The Raiders with newly acquired WR Randy Moss started the season in the spotlight as they faced the two time defending champion New England Patriots in a Thursday Night Primetime Special to start the NFL season. Moss would collect 130 receiving yards and Touchdown, but the Pats would get the win 30-20. After losing their next two the Raiders finally broke through against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 4, winning at home 19-13. Following a loss to the San Diego Chargers the Raiders won back to back games for the only time during the season to climb 3-4. However, the Raiders would win just one more game the rest of their season as their defense was among the worst in the NFL, while Moss who dealt with a tight hamstring all season had a disappointing first season in silver and black as the losses and frustration mounted in Oakland. The Raiders would go on to finish in last place again with an awful record of 4-12, as Coach Norv Turner was fired following the season. Following an extensive coaching search the Raiders decided to go back to the past to select their coach as they hired Art Shell who had previously led the Raiders from 1988-1994, before being dismissed as the team moved back to Oakland.

2006- There were no highlights they sucked. We'll see how they recover in "07"

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