Sense of sadness envelopes Raiders

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Sense of sadness envelopes Raiders

HOUSTON -- A sense of sadness wrapped in remembrance enveloped the Raiders' team hotel as Oakland's traveling party got word of owner Al Davis passing away in California on Saturday morning.The team traveled to Houston on Friday and was told as a group of Davis' passing in a team meeting Saturday morning."It was hard," Raiders rookie coach Hue Jackson said of the mood of the team after telling the players. "Obviously, we want him to live forever. And I think our players never thought anything would ever happen to him because he's Coach. But I think they're sad, I think they're disappointed, but we'll channel it the right way. We're going to play a football game and we understand what his message would be to us -- Just win, baby. And that's what we're looking forward to doing."RELATED: Official Raiders statement
The Raiders face the Texans on Sunday, but Davis' legacy was first and foremost on their minds."It isn't 'Let's win one for the Gipper,'" defensive tackle Richard Seymour said. "I feel as if he would want us to go out and do what we do, and the end result would be winning. There will definitely be a moment of silence and definitely a lot of passion, for sure. We have to go out and emulate what he would want us to be."Seymour joined the Raiders in a trade with New England the week before the 2009 season began."In my short time of knowing him," Seymour added, "his passion, his will to win, will forever be with me."In my mind he's a legend. He'll always be remembered, not only in my heart or in the Raiders' heart, as a foundation in the NFL.Seymour said he last spoke with Davis "a few days after (the) Buffalo" game."He transcends black, white, it didn't matter," Seymour said. "To him it was about winning. It was about people. Even when you go to politics. It didn't matter, Republican, Democrat, he was about the end result. We all can learn a lot from him."Punter Shane Lechler was drafted by Davis and the Raiders in 2000 and Lechler said in a conversation with his wife earlier in the day he took stock of his own NFL life.RATTO: Raiders' future -- the pressing questions
"He's meant a lot, he's provided for me and my family a lot of great things," Lechler said. "You can look around at everything we have and we kind of owe him a lot. He gave me a shot here and it's worked out for me and I appreciate that from him and his family."Defensive end Jarvis Moss received a somewhat congratulatory phone call from Davis this week after his recent play."It was just a great experience," Moss said. "For him to be gone right now, it's tough for the whole Raider family. My heart just goes out to Coach Davis' immediate family and may he rest in peace."Running back and special teams standout Rock Cartwright echoed similar sentiments."Awesome man, awesome person, awesome individual," Cartwright said of Davis. "Someone whose door was always open. We're definitely going to miss him, but he's in a better place now."Quarterback Jason Campbell was compared to two-time Super Bowl champion Jim Plunkett by Davis when he first arrived in Oakland after a 2010 Draft Weekend trade with Washington."He's the one guy who would always call you to check on you to see how you're doing, how your family's doing," Campbell said. "We're definitely going to miss him. He's done a lot for the NFL."We're going to try to rally as a team."Lechler agreed."Not to say that we would play any different for him," Lechler said, "but this one's going to mean a little bit more to the organization, to the team, and (we're) looking forward to the challenge."Said Jackson: "I just know Coach would want us to go out and play like Raiders. What a tremendous person, a tremendous man, and I owe him so much. This league owes him so much. He's a legend, he's an icon and we will honor him by playing the way the Raiders should play."

Raiders head to NFL owners meetings looking for Las Vegas approval

Raiders head to NFL owners meetings looking for Las Vegas approval

PHOENIX -- All signs point to the Raiders being approved for relocation to Las Vegas. It could happen as early as Monday, when the topic will be discussed at the NFL owners meetings in Phoenix. It could be Tuesday. Or in May. Or at any point in a conference call.

The timing is less important than the ultimate outcome. The when is uncertain. The what seems likely, though not guaranteed, at this stage.

The Raiders need 24 of 32 approval votes to relocate and start construction on new digs.

The Raiders have presented a solid application to the NFL, centered on a stadium proposal in Las Vegas that includes $750 million in public funds for stadium construction. Bank of America, who is financing the project, is expected to loan the Raiders money to complete a financing plan that includes the public contribution and $500 million from the team and the NFL.

The Sports Business Journal reported on Sunday that the estimated stadium cost has dropped to $1.7 billion, and will receive $200 million in infrastructure improvements not included in their construction contribution.

League sources continue to say approval is expected. There is great confidence within the Raiders organization a vote will go their way.

Some issues remain, though none are significant roadblocks. A stadium lease hasn’t been finalized and a site hasn’t been formally announced – it’s reportedly set for a spot just off the Las Vegas Strip near Russell Road – so approval would likely come with conditions that could be met in time.

The Raiders worked a sweetheart deal that mines significant money from the public. They don’t have investors with direct ties to gambling. And, as important as anything else, the NFL doesn’t believe Oakland has a viable plan to keep the Raiders in an otherwise attractive, booming market.

That includes the latest proposal from the Oakland and financial partner Fortress Investments announced on Friday that makes certain concessions aimed at getting the Raiders back to the table.

The Silver and Black haven’t worked with East Bay officials in more than as year, as they’ve shifted complete focus to their Las Vegas quest.

The revised Oakland plan didn’t move the needle, a league executive said. That point was made crystal clear in a letter NFL commissioner Roger Goodell sent to Oakland mayor Libby Schaaf.

“The material that we reviewed earlier today confirms certain information that had previously been communicated orally, such as a willingness to bring bank financing to a stadium project, and a proposed valuation of the land at the Coliseum site,” Goodell wrote in a letter obtained by Bay Area News Group. “It also confirms that key issues that we have identified as threshold considerations are simply not resolvable in a reasonable time. In that respect, the information sent today does not present a proposal that is clear and specific, actionable in a reasonable timeframe, and free of major contingencies.”

That virtually eliminates the prospect of Oakland planting doubt in NFL owners’ minds heading into a pivotal discussion on the topic Monday at the Arizona Biltmore hotel.

It’s possible the stadium and finance committee will make a formal recommendation on the Raiders application to relocate. That could precede a vote, and generally holds significant weight among undecided owners.

A league source said the new Oakland plan will be a talking point, though it may not be viewed in a flattering light. That’s especially true in light of Goodell’s letter.

“At this date, there remains no certainty regarding how the site will be fully developed, or the specific and contractually-defined nature of the participation by Fortress or other parties,” Goodell wrote. “In addition, the long-term nature of the commitment to the A’s remains a significant complication and the resolution of that issue remains unknown. Other significant uncertainties, which we have previously identified, remain unaddressed. We had hoped that the past two years would have allowed both of us to develop a viable project.”

Peterson blasts report over salary demands, outlines main objectives

Peterson blasts report over salary demands, outlines main objectives

Adrian Peterson played defense on Friday night.

Hours after a report suggesting that the four-time All-Pro running back was still a free agent due to salary demands, the former Viking posted a lengthy statement on Instagram along with a video of his running an agility drill.

"YOU CANT BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU READ OR HEAR PEOPLE. The last thing I'm worried about is playing ball this coming season ... that WILL HAPPEN! It's not all about the money as EVERYONE is speculating here lately. You'd THINK these analysts spoke to me directly. When you don't know what's going on people will say anything to create or make a story! How prideful is it for me to put out ... I won't play for anything less than 8 million! But see, when you don't know a person or what they stand for it's easy to paint YOUR OWN PICTURE. Unfortunately, this is the world we live in! Here is something Straight from the horse's mouth ... finding the best fit & helping a team in a major way win a championship is my main objective! I'm in no rush. Let me eliminate questions or speculation as to why... I believe whole heartedly my God will land me right where I need to be to accomplish what I've asked from him PERIOD"

Early in the free agency period, the Raiders were linked to Peterson, but nothing came of those rumors.

The Raiders, in need of a feature back after Latavius Murray signed with the Vikings, are reportedly pursuing the possibility of luring Oakland-native Marshawn Lynch out of retirement.

Peterson was scheduled to make $18 million in 2017, but the Vikings declined to exercise his contract, making him a free agent. The 2012 NFL MVP turned 32 on March 21 and played in just three games in 2016 due to a major knee injury.

According to the ESPN report, Peterson was looking for a contract that paid him over $8 million in the first year of the deal.

YOU CANT BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU READ OR HEAR PEOPLE. The last thing I'm worried about is playing ball this coming season ... that WILL HAPPEN! It's not all about the money as EVERYONE is speculating here lately. You'd THINK these analysts spoke to me directly. When you don't know what's going on people will say anything to create or make a story! How prideful is it for me to put out ... I won't play for anything less than 8 million! But see, when you don't know a person or what they stand for it's easy to paint YOUR OWN PICTURE. Unfortunately, this is the world we live in! Here is something Straight from the horse's mouth ... finding the best fit & helping a team in a major way win a championship is my main objective! I'm in no rush. Let me eliminate questions or speculation as to why... I believe whole heartedly my God will land me right where I need to be to accomplish what I've asked from him PERIOD

A post shared by Adrian L Peterson (@adrianpeterson) on