For the second time in team history, the Oakland Raiders will be saying goodbye to their home. However, it seems like they won’t be coming back this time. With the bright lights of Las Vegas on the horizon, Sunday’s game versus the Jacksonville Jaguars could very well represent the last NFL game to ever be played in Oakland California.
Despite the fact that the Raiders are leaving their fans in the Bay Area, Raider Nation still has shown the team massive support throughout the season. Thousands of passionate fans and former players gathered to the Coliseum on Sunday to say goodbye to their longtime team. While the Raiders are only moving several hours away, it’s hard to imagine that the same atmosphere will ever be captured in the new stadium.
Fans & Players React to Last Game
Nobody wanted to miss the chances to witness the Raiders play their last game in the coliseum and the fans showed up in droves.
Former players and coaches couldn’t resist the allure of making one more appearance.
Even those who couldn’t make it showed their love for Oakland and the Raiders fan base.
And, of course, the Raiders players are getting ready to say their goodbyes.
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Mark Davis Speaks
Owner Mark Davis may have made some enemies in the Raiders’ fan base by making the call to move them, but there’s no denying he respects and reveres Oakland. He had a chance to talk about his memories of the Coliseum.
“There are many (memories), so many great times,” Davis said this week, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. “I’d say the first 16 years are filled with a lot of magic, the second 16 years, not so much. If you want a more recent memory, the Thursday night game against the Chiefs (in 2014). We were 0-10 and it was pouring rain and the crowd showed up, and that was quite an event that night. That meant quite a bit to me and the organization. That was a great night, that was a great memory.”
Davis knows the role that Oakland has had in shaping the identity of the Raiders.
“The Raiders were born in Oakland, and Oakland will always be part of our DNA,” he said. “We also got 13 years in Los Angeles. That will also be part of our DNA and now we’ve got 30 years ahead of us in Las Vegas. I love the Raider Nation. Always have. I have never had a problem with them and I don’t think they’ve ever had a problem with me. Obviously, a lot of them are disappointed that we are moving the franchise at this point in time, and I can imagine some of them are upset, but they love the Raiders. They are a part of it.”
He also had a chance to talk about Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.
“They call it the Death Star, some of the fans are calling it the Death Star,” he said. “It’s a beautiful black glass building with black ribbons going around it with a few touches of silver. It’s going to be just fantastic.”
Despite the team not having the best year in franchise history, Davis believes the future is bright for the team.
“Although we haven’t reached the goals that we’re hoping to achieve,” Davis said, “we’re definitely making progress. It’s hard for the outside world to see it. And I don’t blame them for thinking we haven’t gotten there, because we haven’t gotten there yet. But I’m excited about what we’re building.”