The NFL Will Be Forever Changed by Davis’ Passing

With the untimely demise of Al Davis on Saturday morning, the NFL lost a great man, and aso a great villain.

For the extent of his time in the football world, Al Davis was loved, and yet at the same time hated. Feared and respected, venerated and disparaged. Davis left a mark on the NFL that will be sorely missed.

Davis made John Madden a legendary football coach, and spearheaded the AFL/NFL merger, but his greatest accomplishment was his mark as an owner.

He revolutionized the concept of the active owner. The owner who was involved in day to day activities in the front office and on the field itself.

The old guard of football owners are effectively finished with Davis’ passing, and it is interesting to see where general ownership will go from here.

Jerry Jones and Robert Kraft are two other major owners still with us, but their approach, while certainly successful, is decidedly less entertaining to the general public.

It appears that the image of the NFL will now be focused slightly more on the marketability and appearance of the league rather than the football itself. The NFL needs more owners at the forefront of their organizations.

A Marc Cuban like owner cheering on his team is much more of a motivator than someone like Jones, who while he loves and supports his team, really only focuses on the business side and the massive stadium.

“Just Win Baby!” was Davis’ slogan, and with the Raiders motto “Commitment to Excellence,” Davis’ vision will be carried on in his stead.

It is difficult to foresee the effect that Davis’ passing will have on the league in general. He was the figurehead of the Raiders and a “founding father” of the NFL as it is today.

Who will step up to take Davis’ place as the new maniacal leader of the Raiders?

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