The story seems to suggest that the recession has nothing to do with sports, since a bunch of Raiders fans had enough money left over to buy a billboard in an effort to get Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis to give up the reins of his team and hire a General Manager. The Raiders are one of five NFL team’s that do not employ a General Manager. Of those teams; the Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys, New England Patriots, Washington Redskins, and of course the Raiders, only the Patriots have managed to be successful without a GM running the show.
The group has said they have more than 21,000 signatures on a petition and want Mr. Davis to hire a GM, a Super Bowl caliber coach and make a public pledge to not interfere with personnel or other football operation matters. The billboard is located on the freeway right near the Oakland Coliseum home of the Raiders.
The Raiders have won three Super Bowls with Davis as their, however he has long been a thorn in the side of not only the NFL, but in many cases the fans of his team. While the Raiders were once a model franchise and really an elite NFL team, since 2003 they have an overall record of 27-80 and that is second worst in the NFL during that time span, only beating the Detroit Lions who rode a 0-16 2008 season to a 26-83 record.
The simple fact here is the Raiders are a mess, and the game has passed the once brilliant Al Davis by. He needs to hire a GM, they need to find the right coach, and they need to draft the right QB. That may sound like a lot to do but it is all doable in the span of one off-season if Davis can give up control of the day to day operations of the Raiders.