Sunday, January 23, 2022

Raiders honoring John Madden with helmet decals following Hall of Fame coach’s death at 85

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The Las Vegas Raiders will wear a helmet decal honoring late Hall of Fame coach John Madden during Sunday’s game against the Indianapolis Colts. Madden passed away last week at 85 years old. Madden’s last playoff win as the Raiders’ coach game against the Colts in a game that is known for Dave Casper’s “Ghost to the post” reception. 

Every NFL stadium will honor Madden with a moment of silence before the start of this week’s games. 

Madden compiled a .759 winning percentage as the Raiders coach, the highest percentage in league history among coaches that have won 100 games. During his 10 seasons as the Raiders head coach, Madden led the team to the playoffs eight times. The Raiders never had a losing season under Madden, who posted a 103-32-7 record as Oakland’s coach. 

The Raiders appeared in seven AFC title games under Madden that included five straight from 1973-77. And after falling short in his first five AFC title games, Madden and the Raiders finally broke through in 1976. After a 13-1 regular season, the Raiders dethroned the Steelers — the team that had defeated Oakland in the previous two AFC title games — to punch their first ticket to the Super Bowl. In Super Bowl XI, the Raiders dominated the Vikings behind a punishing rushing attack and equally devastating defense. 

Madden coached a bevy of Hall of Fame players including Ken Stabler, Fred Biletnikoff, George Blanda, Dave Casper, Gene Upshaw, Art Shell, Jim Otto, Bob Brown, Willie Davis, Ted Hendricks, Ron Mix, and Ray Guy. Cliff Branch, a star receiver under Madden, is a senior finalist for induction in 2022. Madden was presented into the Hall of Fame by former Raiders owner Al Davis, who in 1969 hired the then-32-year-old Madden to be his coach. 

“The Raiders Family is deeply saddened by the passing of the legendary John Madden,” the Raiders said in a statement. “Few individuals meant as much to the growth and popularity of professional football as Coach Madden, whose impact on the game both on and off the field was immeasurable.”

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