Have you read where Tim Brown, former Oakland receiver and Hall-of-Fame candidate…until now…said that former Raiders coach Bill Callahan sabotaged the team’s chances to win the Super Bowl in 2002?
“We all called it sabotage, because Callahan and Gruden was good friends,and Callahan had a big problem with the Raiders, hated the Raiders, and only came because Gruden made him come,” Brown said.
Does anyone believe that? Does anyone believe a coach would pass up football immortality to hate on the Raiders?
Of course, Callahan didn’t help any with his comments about the team after a loss to the hated Broncos the next season:
“If we don’t learn how not to beat ourselves, we won’t win again, and we won’t win for a long time,” Callahan shouted to reporters after his team’s 22-8 loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday.
“We’ve got to be the dumbest team in America in terms of playing the game. I’m highly critical because of the way we give games away — we give ’em away! Period. It’s embarrassing, and I represent that. And I apologize for that.
“If that’s the best we can do, it’s a sad product.”
I don’t believe Brown because he’s always shown signs of paranoia, but Jerry Rice gives it some cred. The Raiders were nowhere near as bad as they played in that Super Bowl and as veteran a team as they were, they shouldn’t have fallen apart over the loss of Robbins. Also, if a former coach makes that big a difference against a former team, hell, teams would hire that coach for one game. It’s weird the Raiders were that bad when they were previously that good, but Callahan wasn’t that great a coach in the first place. You’ve seen him as Nebraska’s coach; he was terrible. Switching up the game plan at that late stage couldn’t have helped things, but I’d rather think of Callahan as incompetent versus sabotaging a team. Interesting, in the Mike and Mike video, Greenberg says the Buccaneers claimed they knew all of the Raiders calls.
If Big Al had heard Callahan threw the Big Bowl, he would have made sure Callahan never coached anywhere ever again. Not even Mike Shanahan would have hired him.