Reaction to death of Raiders owner Al Davis

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Al Davis is one of the main reasons our family is in the NFL today. Al approached my dad (Alex Spanos) about getting involved in the NFL and was very helpful to us through the process. … He personified the image and mystique of the Raiders, and that image has helped build the strength of our rivalries and the popularity of our game. There has been no one in the NFL like Al Davis.” _ San Diego Chargers president Dean Spanos.

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Al and I were very good friends for many years, and I admired his innovative approach to the game of football. Al had a great impact on the American Football League that carried over to the National Football League after the merger, and his competitive spirit embodied our sport. Al’s Raiders may not have won every game, but you knew that you were in for a tough, hard-fought contest every time you played them, regardless of the score.” _ Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson Jr.

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Mr. Davis was a pioneer in our league and a visionary in its development. His contributions still remain a major part of our game today.” _ New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton.

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Al Davis was truly a pioneer of the football world who made tremendous contributions to the league. It was a pleasure to serve with him. He leaves an indelible mark on professional football from his many years as a coach, general manager and owner.” _ Jacksonville Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver.

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“He was an icon, a legend, a pioneer. I’m honored that he chose to draft me. It was a great pleasure being a part of Raider Nation, part of all the great teams and players that put on that Silver and Black. You don’t know what it means to be a Raider until you are a Raider, and that was his team. He spoke to you not just as an owner but as a coach. He was very hands-on. You felt his presence, and he really cared for you and your family.” _ Bengals linebacker Thomas Howard, Oakland’s second-round pick in 2006 who played there five years.

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Al Davis has long been a pillar of professional football and a leader of one of our most legendary franchises. His contributions, dedication and foresight changed the game for the better. The league has lost one of its all-time greats.” _ Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay.

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