This is gonna turn nasty at some point.
immediately following that Super Bowl loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2002? Yes, I know that happend a decade ago, a long ass time ago now, but we still have not recovered from that, eventhough it happend a long time ago, it's still very hard to believe a more bigger dramatic drop, collapse than that, because in 2002 we make the Super Bowl by going 11-5, the following year we go 4-12 ,and it is still to this day an NFL record for being the biggest drop, collapse for a Super Bowl team the following year, whether that Super Bowl team was a SB winner or loser, which would be the first of a long run of double-digit loss seasons, specifically, 7 straight seasons losing 11 or more games, an NFL record for futility, incompetence, and still not making the playoffs, post-season since then, we have fired 6 Head Coaches in that span, it's like, wow!, geeze! damn!!!!, we went from riches to rags instantly, immediately, one of the biggest single-season drop-offs in Professional Sports history!!!.
Overall, what specifically caused use to suck for this long already? what were the horrible, stupid moves Al Davis did while he was still alive besides drafting Jamarcus Russell, getting rid of Jon Gruden, what other moves did he do that causesd to still be in this death spiral we still have not completely gotten out of yet?
Yes, I know Al Davis passed away a year ago, but i think it is gonna take us a long time to clean up the mess he made, hence why we are still struggling this year, looks to be another double-digit loss season.
Seriously, I can't stand the Hell, Torture we as a Nation have been going through the past decade.
Raider Dark Age, 2003-2009
From 1963 - 2002, the Raiders went on an epic run. During that 40 year period the Raiders posted a winning percentage of .632, the highest in the NFL during that time frame. Throw in the legendary players, games, coaches and five Super Bowl appearances, and the Raiders were considered an elite franchise in the world of professional sports. The Raiders were an organizational superpower single handily ran by the one and only Al Davis. Davis’ teams were so consistent during this run, that they became known as the Team of the Decades. To be sure, the Raiders knew how to win. In fact, the Raiders lost more than ten games in a single season only twice during that 40 year span. So then how in the world did the Raiders fall so far as to lose 10 or more games in seven consecutive seasons???
Looking back, Al made three major mistakes in the draft that derailed the Raiders. The drafting of Robert Gallery and Jake Grove in 2004 began the Dark Age and the drafting of JaMarcus Russell in 2007 extended the period of tribulation. These draft picks carried a lot of clout and the assumption was that said players would fulfill their roles and proceed to greatness. As it was, these decisions were not considered mistakes at the time. In fact, the picks were considered astute and prudent by many an expert. The following chronicle attempts to illuminate the effect that the drafting of these individuals had on the organization and how the selections allowed the Raiders the confidence to build the team in other areas. The unfulfilled dreams of the above players, created a nightmare for the Raiders.
2003 – The Raiders began the 2003 season with a Super Bowl hangover following their loss to Tampa Bay in SB 37. As constituted on paper, the Raiders were still a formidable team and the organizational plan was to remain the same. I guess Al figured the team had one more run in the tank and held them over with the confidence that they would keep their eyes on the prize. The 2003 season had its early ups and downs until a true blow hit the team – Rich Gannon tore the labrum in his throwing shoulder and was effectively out for the season. The Raiders faded and finished 4-12. Without Gannon, the Raiders were a mere shadow of themselves, which led to some consideration. Al realized that it was indeed time to begin planning for the future. Many of his key players were long in the tooth and could not be counted on moving forward.
2004 – With the 2nd and 34th picks of the 2004 draft at his disposal, Al decided to use the picks on the cornerstones that would stabilize the Raider OL for the foreseeable future. He drafted Robert Gallery and Jake Grove. Galley and Grove were respectively considered the best left tackle and the best center being ushered in from the college ranks. It was clear that Al understood the importance of a great offensive line and took the opportunity to bolster his own unit. He was applauded and considered on the money with his picks. Prior to the season the Raiders hired Norv Turner as head coach, who was highly recommended by Jimmy Johnson. The 2004 season also saw the return of Gannon following surgery to his throwing shoulder. But he would last only 3 games and eventually retired after suffering a neck injury. Kerry Collins took over the QB duties for the remainder of the season and led the Raiders to a 5-11 season. The Raiders were obviously in transition and the roster would need to be bolstered in order to return the team to its winning ways.
2005 – Gallery and Grove had faired pretty well during the 2004 season and hopes were high that they would ascend to pro bowl status during the 2005 season. They had their issues adjusting to the NFL game as rookies, but that was to be expected. Al figured that they were on track and confidently went about the business of bolstering the offensive weaponry. Al traded for Randy Moss and signed Lamont Jordan during the off season. Combined with Collins and Jerry Porter, the Raiders were loaded once again. With Gallery and Grove anchoring the OL, the Raiders vaunted vertical scheme would take flight and dominate. With a revamped defense, the Raiders appeared poised to return to the playoffs and beyond. So they thought. The 2005 campaign would end in another losing season with a record of 4-12. Norv Turner was fired and for the first time, questions about Gallery and Grove began to surface. The Raider offense did not live up to expectations and Kerry Collins was exposed. His inability to handle early pressure hampered him all season long and Gallery-Grove were fingered as possible busts.
2006 – The Raiders dumped Kerry Collins and hired Art Shell. Al figured that maybe a blast from the past with some old school Raider methods would do the trick. The Raiders acquired Aaron Brooks to handle QB duties. Hope surged through Raider Nation once again. But 2006 would end in disaster as the team finished the campaign 2-14. The team looked dazed and confused all season long and it became clear that Gallery and Grove were indeed busts. The Raider OL was anemic all year long and the bulk of the blame went to Gallery and Grove, who were very high draft picks with great expectations attached. Art Shell got the axe and the Raiders stumbled into the off season wondering what the hell happened. An important point to add is that the defense was a solid unit, but the offensive woes were so great that the defense suffered as they were on the field for large portions of time during the season. It has been mentioned that the Raiders defense during the Dark Age was poorly constructed. I beg to differ when I say that this unit was very capable, but the offense put huge amounts of pressure on them.
2007 – The Raiders rolled into the 2007 season with the number one pick in the NFL draft for the first time. Al hired Lane Kiffin as the head coach of the Raiders, hoping for another Jon Gruden. What is unfortunate is that a rift between Davis and Kiffin began almost immediately when the Raiders selected JaMarcus Russell. As it turned out, Kiffin was not sold on Russell and consequently disagreed with Al’s choice. According to Al, Kiffin needed to “get ovah it”, which never happened and evidently hampered the relationship between the coach and the owner/GM. To his credit, Al suggested that Kiffin stop crying and go about the business of coaching the team, which is what he was hired to do. Al had given Kiffin plenty of latitude when it came to decisions as evidenced by the trade that sent Randy Moss packing to New England. So he shouldn’t have been so butt hurt when he didn’t get his way on the number one pick. 2007 was another disappointing season as the Raiders finished 4-12. The organization seemed satisfied with Kiffin’s performance and sided with the idea that the team was not ready to win talent wise.
2008 – The feud between Al Davis and Lane Kiffin boiled over into the 2008 season which created some significant communication problems. These communication issues did not stop the team from acquiring several high profile free agents, including Javon Walker and Deangelo Hall. During the draft the team selected Darren McFadden to help Russell in the backfield. The Raiders went all out to acquire some talent for Kiffin to work with, which drew ridicule from many NFL “experts”. Kiffin himself applauded the moves and the Raiders once again were on the verge, having loaded up. 2008 was also the first full season for one JaMarcus Russell due to his hold out in 2007, which effectively knocked his rookie season out. During the season, Russell showed signs of true ability, but was inconsistent. Before the season unraveled, Kiffin was fired and Tom Cable took over in the interim role. The Raiders finished 4-12 and Russell’s promise came into question, but the Raiders held fast that he would develop into something special. Little did they know that Russell was on his way out of the league due to his inability to grasp the role of being an NFL quarterback. The man was in over his head and didn’t even know it.
2009 and beyond – Tom Cable assumed the head coaching duties in 2009. Richard Seymour was acquired via trade and the Raiders drafted Darrius Heyward-Bey. The Raiders plugged along and finished 5-11, setting a record for most consecutive seasons with 10 or more losses with seven in a row. Cable was credited in keeping the team together when many felt that the disappointing season might cause the team to throw in the towel. JaMarcus Russell’s performance faded as the season went on and it started to become painfully evident that Russell did not have the goods to succeed. Russell would not make it to 2010. The Raiders acquired Jason Campbell from Washington and asked Russell to restructure his deal, which he refused. Russell was released and is considered by many to be the greatest bust in NFL history. The Raiders improved significantly in 2010. With Cable as head coach, Jason Campbell at QB, and newly installed offensive coordinator Hue Jackson calling the plays, the Raiders went on to win 8 games. In 2011, they duplicated the feat with another .500 season. It appears that the Raiders have come out of their funk over the past two years and can at least say they are an average NFL team. Good for them.
My grand point with the above rant is the impact that a bad decision can have on a sports team. I believe that Al Davis did the right thing when he drafted Gallery and Grove. His instinct was to build his OL for the future and it was a perfect draft to do just that. He had the picks and used them wisely. The fact that Gallery and Grove both flopped is a tragedy for Raider fans to this day. Gallery and Grove were “sure things” and Al went about the business of build up the remaining parts of his team. When the OL began to show that the picks were not translating into the expected products, it was too late as the Raiders had built an offense around the prospects and the experiment had already began to fail.
The Raiders tried to pull out of the disaster in 2007 by selecting Russell with the first pick in the draft. With the offense built around Gallery and Grove completely dismantled, Al figured that a good start would be the best QB in the draft, which was the consensus opinion. Again Al made the wrong choice. The Russell debacle cost the Raiders three more seasons in the cellar of the NFL. Many have criticized Davis for his choices during the Dark Age of 2003-2009. I offer you the idea that when Al made the “right” choices, it backfired and caused more trouble than all of the “wrong” choices he had supposedly made over the years. Al got burned. I guess he had it coming considering the great number of times that Al burned his colleagues over the years on his way to the top of the NFL. Gallery, Grove, and Russell brought the Raiders to their knees. Good riddance to them all.
"The Media hated Davis because he kept his mouth shut when it counted and didn't bend over to their tactics. Most NFL owners hated Davis because he was a 'them', having worked his way up, and also because he had no problem hiring minorities when no one else would. You can only have so many people saying bad things about you before the sheep believe it...And now, the sheep don't even know why they hate the Raiders, it's just always been that way..." - Sir Pig
eventhough we lost that Super Bowl in 2002, i still refer to it as winners to losers in just one season because you have to be pretty damn good to let alone just reach the Super Bowl, still, hard to believe a more bigger dramatic drop, collapse than that, still not making the playoffs, post-season since that loss, seriously, Al Davis ruined, destroyed the Raiders, eventhough i have great admiration and respect for him when he was in his youth, prime, i started to hate, despise, loathe him about his Big Ego, Lust for Power and Control, etc.
We got lucky with Gannon being so great after he came here.
Age caught up with many many starters.
The 4.3 40 drafting couldn't replace the smart veterans.
After 10 years of bad drafts and bad free agent signings and trades the Raiders are where they were in 2003.
In short, age and bad draft decisions ruined this once great franchise.
Because in 2007 Andrew Luck and RG3 weren't available to draft!!!
Al Davis started this big mess. When will this **** end Nation ?
Because Al traded Gruden duh!!!
My next door neighbor is a Raider fan my 2 neighbors across from me are Raider fans. A Lion fan down the street hung up a Detriot Lions flag outside his house a week ago.
My neighbors and I hung up Raider Flags today and now it seems like the Lions fan took his down, huh I wonder why he did that?
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