Allen “Al” Davis was a manager and coach in American football. He was the main owner and general manager of the National Football League’s Oakland Raiders (NFL). As an assistant for the Los Angeles Chargers under Sid Gillman, he learned about the “vertical” passing game that Gillman had made. As a coach, he improved the scheme and used it to turn around the struggling Raiders team. As the head of the American Football League, he was against the NFL and AFL coming together. Because he did things too quickly, he didn’t last long as commissioner. He was strict with his coaches and players, and he only expected them to do one thing: win. He made players who were outcasts and thought to be bad people feel at home in Oakland, so when Al told them to “Just Win, Baby,” they didn’t have any trouble. He wasn’t afraid to hire people of different races to lead his team. He took a chance on John Madden, a linebackers coach who was 32 years old and not very well known. He was right to do so, as Madden turned the Raiders into a perennial powerhouse. He was the first NFL owner to hire an African-American head coach and a woman to run the team. He did this because he believed in inequality. He was a free spirit and a rebel, and his legacy will last forever.
Early years and childhood
Allen Davis was born in Brockton, Massachusetts, on July 4, 1929, to Louis and Rose Davis. He had an older brother named Jerry. Louis tried a lot of different jobs before settling down in the business of making clothes.
In 1934, the family moved to Brooklyn and into a better home. He went to Erasmus Hall High School and was a backup player on the school team. Coach Al Badain taught him how to coach.
Davis finished high school in 1947. He went to Wittenberg College in Ohio for a while, but then he switched to Syracuse University. Davis tried to join the men’s basketball team but was turned away. He then became interested in football strategy.
Al Davis’s Career
After getting his B.A. in English in 1950, Davis wanted to coach college football while working on his master’s degree. He was hired as a coach at Adelphi University, Long Island.
As soon as he got his master’s degree in 1952, he joined the Army. In 1953, General Stanley Scott of Fort Belvoir, Virginia, hired Davis to coach the football team at his base.
He stayed at Fort Belvoir until 1954 when he got out of the Army. While coaching in the Army, he sold information about his players to National Football League (NFL) teams.
He was a free-lance scout for the NFL’s Baltimore Colts for a year. During that time, he told the Colts which players they should sign contracts or draft when they got out of the military.
Weeb Ewbank, who was the head coach of the Colts, had connections that helped Davis get a job at The Citadel as an assistant to John Sauer, who had just been hired as the new head coach. Davis took credit for The Citadel’s success.
He became an assistant coach at the University of Southern California and helped the team win the Pacific Coast Conference title. When the job of head coach opened up, he was not in the running for it.
Davis was hired as the backfield coach when Sid Gillman became the coach of the AFL’s Los Angeles Chargers. Davis tricked his NFL rivals, the San Francisco 49ers, into letting him draft Lance Alworth, a wide receiver.
After the Raiders’ 1962 season, F. Wayne Valley, the team’s general partner, hired Davis as head coach and general manager. Davis was the youngest person in the history of professional football to hold the position. He was 33 years old.
He used what he called the “vertical game,” which was an aggressive offensive strategy made by Sid Gillman, the head coach of the Chargers. The Raiders now have a record of 10–4, which is the first winning record in the team’s history.
In April 1966, he was named Commissioner of the American Football League. He quickly signed several of the NFL’s best players to contracts with the AFL. But he quit when the Leagues said they were going to join together in July.
He started a holding company called A.D. Football, Inc. and went back to the Oakland Raiders as one of three partners with a 10 percent stake in the team and the job of head of football operations.
In 1969, John Madden became the team’s sixth head coach. Over the next ten years, the Raiders won six division titles and became one of the most successful teams in the NFL.
The AFL and NFL merged in 1970, and the Raiders joined the NFL’s Western Division. The Raiders won the AFC West in their first two seasons after the merger, but they didn’t win the division.
In 1972, he rewrote the partnership agreement, which made him the new managing general partner and gave him almost complete control over how the team ran. He was also, in a way, his own general manager until he died.
An order from the court stopped him from moving the Raiders to Los Angeles. So, Davis sued the NFL for antitrust violations, and in 1982, a district court ruled in his favor.
From 2003 to 2013, the Raiders didn’t make the playoffs for 11 straight years. In seven of those years, they lost more than 10 games. Quarterback JaMarcus Russell did not do well, and most of the blame was put on Davis.
Davis wouldn’t let the game be played in Alabama because of its segregation laws. He was also the first NFL owner to hire an African-American head coach and a woman to run the team.
The Raiders were one of the most successful teams in professional sports when Davis was both the owner and manager. Between 1967 and 1985, the team won 13 division titles, 1 AFL title, and 3 Super Bowls.
In 1967, he made several changes to the team’s roster. He signed quarterbacks Daryle Lamonica of the Buffalo Bills, George Blanda of the Houston Oilers, and Gene Upshaw, who became the most important player on the Oakland offensive line.
Al Davis’s Awards
Davis was the first person to win the Retired Players Award of Excellence from the NFL Players Association. In 1992, Davis was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame by John Madden.
Davis was given the “Order of the Leather Helmet” by the NFL Alumni in 1998. This award is given every year to “individuals who have made significant contributions to the game of professional football.”
Personal History and Legacies
Davis died of heart failure on October 8, 2011. He was survived by his wife, Carol, and their only child, Mark, who became the Raiders’ managing general partner and owns most of the team with his mother.
Estimated Net worth
Al Davis was an executive and football coach in the United States. He was worth $500 million. Al Davis was born in Brockton, Mass., on July 5, 1929. From 1972 to 2011, he was the main owner and general manager of the NFL’s Oakland Raiders.
This American football executive’s quote, “We don’t take what the defense gives us; we take whatever the hell we want,” shows how bold he is.
He was kind and helped former players in need without making a big deal about it. Once a Raider, Always a Raider was his motto.