OAKLAND — When it was finished, after the home team failed in crunch time to fall a fourth successive game, Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr trekked into the Dark Hole.
Carr wished to say farewell to a couple members of this Raiders Nation he has shared some Coliseum memories together with, a gesture which was noble enough following the last home game on Sunday closed the book to a dominant chapter in the franchise’s history.
As Carr approached the stands behind the south end zone, the fans booed.
They booed heartily. And keeping with Dark Hole personality, they booed even more when he jogged off following a short trip.
How fitting. Sure , the Raiders were closed out at the second half from the Jacksonville Jaguars and Carr had been outplayed down the stretch from rookie Gardner Minshew.
“What is new?” Carr said of the boos in the wake of the 20-16 defeat. “When we do not win, that is going to take place. Trust me, it is nothing beneath my skin. It is nothing new.”
Nevertheless this apparently had a deeper significance than the normal booing.
The Raiders (6-8) wilted to a day when a lot of the franchise’s most legends — Marcus Allen, Tim Brown, Fred Biletnikoff, Jim Plunkett and Charles Woodson were in the home — returned to indicate the farewell with everything had been presumed to be a victory lap.
With this much power in the atmosphere — that the appreciation flowing strangely, although the staff is headed to Las Vegas together with the possibility of exploding team owner Mark Davis’ pockets with money — that the Raiders found a means to penis a pin in the balloon.
How awkward. It is why Raiders coach Jon Gruden said he was sorry. Why rookie defensive end Maxx Crosby stood at a solemn locker room bemoaning the”sucky” feeling. Why Carr abandoned the area mad. Woodson just stated,”It was challenging, man.”
They knew. The lovers — a few of their most passionate in the NFL — deserved . Especially on a day when they ignited the”Al Fire,” the commemorative fire that pays homage to the late creator, Al Davis, for the last period in Oakland.
However fast did the celebration turn into garbage. Literally.
From the close of the match, the south end zone was littered with crap which delivered exactly the exact same sort of message which would afterwards rain on Carr. Never mind the many dozen security guards which started lining the perimeter of this area in the next quarter, preparing for insanity. Someone from the Dark Hole hurled nachos that struck the goal. The material was splattered at the end zone. Message sent.
They have seen better days around here. But only not many previously 25 decades, because one cynical, long-time scribe pointed out, given the ineptitude which has wrapped the Raiders merchandise on the area.
You understand the Jaguars adored this all went down to Sunday. Minshew, who drove two TDs into Chris Conley at the last five minutes and 15 moments, stated that he”probably saw more middle hands now than I have in my entire life.”
The Jaguars (5-9) were intent to feed all that.
“We wanted to spoil the celebration,” Jacksonville defensive end Calais Campbell told USA TODAY Sports. “We understood what the background here supposed. But there is nothing worse than being the man getting beat if they reveal the background of the final match in the arena. We wanted to make sure they’ll show us at a fantastic light with history.”
Apparently everyone showed up believing the nostalgia. A few hours after the match, almost a dozen officials in the Oakland Police Department left their bikes close to the logo at midfield and took images. At halftime, whilst Woodson managed the microphone and addressed the audience with approximately three dozen former Raiders in tow, a few of the ex-players took selfies about the emblem.
Ahead of the match, the audience roared with a look by MC Hammer. You know it will not get more Oakland compared to that.
Then there was the tailgate party for the ages. Over three hours prior to the match, the parking lots were complete — and hopping. The drinks flowed, grills sizzled, beats prospered as well as the bud burnt. With ideal weather on their side, Raiders fans partied like there are no tomorrow.
And no, there will not be for this specific scene.
“This won’t ever be recreated in vegas. That is Oakland,” explained Anthony Billups, an Oakland native who attended his first Raiders match in 1967. “It hurts to see them depart. It is Oakland all-day.”
The remarks were mixed as it came into the way of behaving on the fandom out of here. Some enthusiasts assert they will support the group but will not travel to Las Vegas. Others, such as Billups’ pal, Paul Auday, vow to maintain attending matches in the”new” house, the $1.9 billion Allegiant Stadium.
“I move to Vegas three times annually, anyhow,” Auday explained.
Among those music-makers on the job, DJ Bullo, hinting he will set up shop in Las Vegas, as failed on Sunday, when he and fellow DJs attracted a bunch by mixing six turntables emblazoned with the Raiders logo.
“Oakland has the best lovers on earth,” Bullo explained. “So, that is actually the last of an age”
It appears that the rabid fans simply deserve far better. The last time the Raiders abandoned, to Los Angeles in 1982, they arrived back later 13 years. However, this time it’s for keeps. The move is just another manifestation of this cold-blooded nature of this company which will be the NFL, they understand all too well in St. Louis. And at San Diego. Along with a generation back in Cleveland, also before that, Baltimore.
Franchises move, revealing precisely where fan loyalty rankings against the most important thing.
Kudos to Carr for showing up at the Black Hole, boos and most importantly, to get a larger purpose. He receives it.
“A number of the folks won’t ever be in a playoff game,” Carr explained. “It is the last time they’ll go. You are feeling for them. It is odd that you will not call’em that the’Oakland Raiders.’
“That is crazy, right?”
Sad, also. The Black Hole simply will not be the exact same in Vegas.
Practice Jarrett Bell on Twitter @JarrettBell.
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