Fans have been coming out in droves to support the Oakland Raiders while they are in the midst of training camp. It’s hot days there up in Napa, but the fans have been powering through it. With so many new exciting talents on the roster, it’s a rare opportunity for fans to see them develop in real-time. With HBO and Hard Knocks in town, fans that decided to stay home will still be able to get an in-depth look at how the team is coming along. That hasn’t stopped of the more famous members of Raider Nation from making the trek to Napa.
Famous Fans Make Their Way to Napa
The mayor of flavortown himself, Guy Fieri, made an appearance at an earlier practice for the team.
The Food Network star has been a long time Raiders even though he was born in Ohio. He’s called Santa Rosa, California home for a while, which is only a couple of hours from Oakland. Fieri has restaurants in Las Vegas, so his Raider fandom will likely continue to stay strong once the move happens.
Another big name that recently made an appearance was rapper G Eazy.
G Eazy was born and raised in Oakland, so that would explain why he’s a Raiders fan. One thing all these Raiders fans have in common is that they’re all hoping the team doesn’t repeat last year’s performance. In addition to appearances from some famous fans, HBO released a trailer for Hard Knocks that has Emmy-nominated actor Liev Schreiber narrate the famous Autumn Wind poem over footage of the team practicing.
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Raiders Legends Appear
The fans didn’t just get a chance to see some celebrities, they also got to see some Raiders legends. There were some legendary defensive backs like Lester Hayes, Mike Haynes and Geroge Atkinson hanging around.
Hayes and Haynes paired together to form one of the best cornerback tandems in NFL history. While Haynes is in the Hall of Fame, Hayes hasn’t gotten the call just yet. Haynes is wary of the team’s move to Vegas and spoke to the media about it.
“Because it’s in Las Vegas, [the stadium] is going to be hugely popular,” Haynes said. “I keep mentioning the fact that I’m afraid the Raiders will lose their home-field advantage to make the fans aware that that could happen and even the league and even the Raiders executives that it could happen, so they can manage that. I figure that [Raiders] tickets are going to be like Super Bowl tickets every home game. Even the Raiders fans who are die-hard Raiders fans will be challenged on their loyalty: Would you come to the game, or [would you] sell your tickets to some other team’s fans to watch their team that’s coming in? Which one would you do? I’m hoping that Raiders fans will remain loyal, and the team will win, and that will be enough encouragement for the fans to want to keep their tickets.”
It’s always going to be a fear for a team moving to a new city that they may lose their fan base. However, Raider Nation is very widespread so it remains to be seen if Haynes fears will become a reality. Linebacker Phil Villapiano was another alumni that made the trip. These Raider legends hope to share wisdom with some of the young guys that haven’t experienced much winning in the NFL.