Let me get this straight….Bill Callahan the head coach of the Oakland Raiders in the 2003 was so fond of his good buddy and friend Jon Gruden that he intentionally “sabotaged” the Raiders chances at winning the Super Bowl by changing the teams’ game plan 48 hours before the game making it easier for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to beat the Raiders…..
Well, If you are living in some kind of alternate reality where bunnies can run for Congress, you would believe the claims made by Hall of Famer and former Oakland Raider Tim Brown, that Callahan wanted to lose the Super Bowl. Brown’s comments were supported by the greatest receiver of them all Jerry Rice, who told USA Today, “maybe he didn’t like the Raiders, maybe (he thought) we should sabotage this a little bit and let Jon Gruden win this one.”
Callahan has vociferously denied the charges and called the comments “shocking, outrageous and sad.” The players say that Callahan changed the game plan just hours before the game causing uproar within the framework of the team. Couldn’t it be possible that Callahan had a severe change of heart and thought his game plan sucked, maybe too many gimmicks and that the team wanted to go back to basics to try to beat Tampa ? How about Callahan just having a horrible coaching moment in making this last minute change ? But, to question his integrity…that seems a bit much.
Think about it. You have reached the pinnacle of your sport and you are coaching in the biggest athletic event on the planet and you are going to sabotage yourself on purpose and try to lose ? It doesn’t make any sense. That is why it boggles my mind that Tim Brown would voice this and Jerry Rice would embrace this suggestion.
Rice even went so far to say that the game plan change was probably the reason Barrett Robbins, the Raiders starting center went AWOL on a drug and drinking binge just hours before the Super Bowl and failed to show up for the game……
Either, these two guys are hard up for attention or maybe THEY have have gone a little AWOL the last few days themselves. In defense of Callahan several Raiders have stepped forward to support Callahan refuting the Brown claims….including former quarterback Rich Gannon and lineman Lincoln Kennedy. But, in several respects the damage is done. Both Brown and Rice are revered in this sport and their opinions carry some weight…..even if their opinions are as asinine as the moon being made of ribs.