Tribute to Al Davis
Age spares no man, no warrior. On October 8, 2011, Al Davis was lost to the Raider family and NFL community.  Some of the final video and photography depict a defiant chieftain hobbled by a walker, a flock of thinned out hair, an ulcer of sorts on his forehead.  He was, after all, just a man. Yet somehow, we thought he would always be here to lead us. We remember Al Davis not for one or two games but for decades of greatness. His passion and leadership touched not only the game of football but American culture and civil rights.


Tribute to AL DAVIS - legendary owner of the Oakland Raiders -
He never wanted anybody at the Raiders to publicize the fact that twice in the mid-1960s, he refused to let the Raiders travel for exhibition and all-star games in the South because the players would have had to stay, separately, in segregated hotels. “So you understand?” Davis was asked when told of the travel arrangements. “I understand,” he replied. “We’re not coming.” (Judy Batista,, October 8, 2011)
Tribute to AL DAVIS - NFL AFL -
Al Davis was an outstanding coach in the college ranks, the Army, and the AFL, winning AFL Coach of the Year honors in 1963. He actively scouted and drafted players from traditionally black colleges in an era when doing so was taboo. The color of one’s skin was irrelevant–it was the right thing to do. His convictions helped pave the wave for minority athletes in professional football.
















Davis hired the NFL’s first Hispanic head coach in 1979 (Tom Flores) and its first African American head coach in 1989 (Art Shell) because they were the best man for the job. He also developed Amy Trask into the NFL’s first and only female CEO.




At age 36, Al Davis became Commissioner of the upstart AFL and was a driving force behind the AFL-NFL merger. The NFL, as most people know it today, played its first games in 1970. Davis is the only person in NFL history to be a coach, an owner, a general manager, and a league commissioner. The Raiders have won 3 Super Bowls and 15 division titles.  He was legendary, iconic, and even in bad times seemed immortal.  Yet he was only a man. Al Davis (1929 – 2011).