(Image Source: Raiders.com)
 

BY BRIAN BONDUS
ANCHOR LAUREN GORES

 

Former Oakland Raiders wide receiver Tim Brown says former head coach Bill Callahan sabotaged the team’s chances to win Super Bowl 37 in 2003. Brown tells ESPN’s Coach and Company, the game plan was to run the ball... until right before the Super Bowl.

“That the game plan was changed on Friday. Why it was changed we don’t know. We’ll never know. We’ve asked for explanations after the game, the next year, beginning of next year and we never got it. So it is what it is.”

Hall of fame receiver and teammate on that Raider squad, Jerry Rice, supported Brown’s claim.  He told NFL Live, maybe Callahan was secretly rooting for the opposing Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Jon Gruden, the former Raider head football coach.   

“Maybe because he didn’t like the Raiders he decided, hey look, maybe we should sabotage just a bit and let Gruden go out and win this one.”

Not all ex-Raider football players agree with the wide receiver combo. Former Raider Bill Romanowski tells Philadelphia's The Fanatic, Brown’s claim that Callahan might have thrown the game is outrageous.

“I’m absolutely flabbergasted! Is he trying to be relevant for the Super Bowl? What is he trying to do? He absolutely couldn’t be farther from the truth.”

If the plan leading up to the game was to run the ball, that strategy would make sense.  After all, the Raiders’ offensive line outweighed Tampa’s defensive line by sixty pounds per man. By choosing to pass, Oakland quarterback Rich Gannon ended up throwing the ball 44 times, completed 24 and threw 5 interceptions.  For the record, Gannon says, he supported Callahan’s game-plan.

“There was a lot of talk about running the football during the week and as the week went along I think that  continued to be the plan. I think what happened was that we came out and tried to run the football early in that game, we didn’t have a lot of success.”

The Raiders did have success running the ball during the regular season, but the passing game had gotten hot during the playoffs. The team threw the ball 71 times in the first two rounds of the playoff that year and had dominated. One sportswriter for Sports Illustrated says, despite the outcome of the Super Bowl,  the passing game was Oakland’s best chance.


“What the Raiders do best is throw the football and they learned a valuable lesson in playing the Jets. If they get away from what they do best -- try to balance their attack -- they will keep their opponent in the game.”

All of which gives some merit to Callahan’s last minute game-plan changes. Instead of calling Callahan’s character into question, some are now wondering how this will affect Brown’s Hall of Fame chances. He will be on the ballot for the fourth time this year.

Former Raiders Say Coach Sabotaged Super Bowl

by Brian Bondus
0
Transcript
Jan 23, 2013

Former Raiders Say Coach Sabotaged Super Bowl

(Image Source: Raiders.com)
 

BY BRIAN BONDUS
ANCHOR LAUREN GORES

 

Former Oakland Raiders wide receiver Tim Brown says former head coach Bill Callahan sabotaged the team’s chances to win Super Bowl 37 in 2003. Brown tells ESPN’s Coach and Company, the game plan was to run the ball... until right before the Super Bowl.

“That the game plan was changed on Friday. Why it was changed we don’t know. We’ll never know. We’ve asked for explanations after the game, the next year, beginning of next year and we never got it. So it is what it is.”

Hall of fame receiver and teammate on that Raider squad, Jerry Rice, supported Brown’s claim.  He told NFL Live, maybe Callahan was secretly rooting for the opposing Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Jon Gruden, the former Raider head football coach.   

“Maybe because he didn’t like the Raiders he decided, hey look, maybe we should sabotage just a bit and let Gruden go out and win this one.”

Not all ex-Raider football players agree with the wide receiver combo. Former Raider Bill Romanowski tells Philadelphia's The Fanatic, Brown’s claim that Callahan might have thrown the game is outrageous.

“I’m absolutely flabbergasted! Is he trying to be relevant for the Super Bowl? What is he trying to do? He absolutely couldn’t be farther from the truth.”

If the plan leading up to the game was to run the ball, that strategy would make sense.  After all, the Raiders’ offensive line outweighed Tampa’s defensive line by sixty pounds per man. By choosing to pass, Oakland quarterback Rich Gannon ended up throwing the ball 44 times, completed 24 and threw 5 interceptions.  For the record, Gannon says, he supported Callahan’s game-plan.

“There was a lot of talk about running the football during the week and as the week went along I think that  continued to be the plan. I think what happened was that we came out and tried to run the football early in that game, we didn’t have a lot of success.”

The Raiders did have success running the ball during the regular season, but the passing game had gotten hot during the playoffs. The team threw the ball 71 times in the first two rounds of the playoff that year and had dominated. One sportswriter for Sports Illustrated says, despite the outcome of the Super Bowl,  the passing game was Oakland’s best chance.


“What the Raiders do best is throw the football and they learned a valuable lesson in playing the Jets. If they get away from what they do best -- try to balance their attack -- they will keep their opponent in the game.”

All of which gives some merit to Callahan’s last minute game-plan changes. Instead of calling Callahan’s character into question, some are now wondering how this will affect Brown’s Hall of Fame chances. He will be on the ballot for the fourth time this year.

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