The Life Of A Raider...

Angry Pope

All Raider
Feb 2, 2006
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It would be nice to have some of these types of personalities on our beloved team now. The ones we have now are more the misdemeanor type...

WR: Fred Biletnikoff.

1st round draft pick in 1965.

Freddie actually thought he'd be cut - he was insecure. He was easily the slowest player on the team but had more moves than Fred Astaire which is why he's in the Hall of Fame. Biletnikoff also used gobs of stickum on his hands, arms, and uniform - the better to catch passes. Off the field he was plain wacky. He smoked two packs per day (so much for healthy athletes) and got so nervous before games that he routinely threw up. His interviews were so profane that radio and TV reporters couldn't air them. He also thought nothing of clashing with Al Davis. If Davis offered advice, Freddie responded "shut the bleep up you bleeping Jew bleeper!"

TE: Dave Casper.

2nd round pick in 1974.

Casper was nicknamed "Ghost" because he was so pale (and not because of the friendly ghost). He was best known for off-the-wall statements and defying authority (although on the Raiders, nobody noticed). For example, Casper once told Ken Stabler that if everyone moved out of the way, he could take out the nose tackle. Now, it's common for the TE to block a DT. He also asked Stabler to pretend to kneel at the end of the half and throw him a TD. Stabler declined, knowing the opposing team would kill him for doing that. After he left the Raiders for Houston, Casper's defiance of authority surfaced. He showed what he though of head coach Ed Biles by bringing a pillow to team meetings and snoozing. When Biles fined him for taking off his helmet at practice, Casper wore his helmet to meals and ate through the face bars.

OT: Bob Brown.

Despite All-Pro play, Bob Brown wore out his welcome in Philadelphia by arguing with coaches and in Los Angeles in a contract dispute. In LA, Brown found a unique way to discourage teammate Deacon Jones from headslapping him in practice. He replaced the short screw that held helmet padding in place with a long sharp screw. When Jones headslapped him, he impaled his own hand. That might be a death sentence for some, but Brown weighed 295 without an ounce of fat and his motto was "I don't fear nobody". He was always lifting weights and had forearms the size of some people's thighs. He even took a dumbbell to meals and liften while he ate. In Brown's first Raider training camp practice, he lined up against the goal post and slammed it. The goal post toppled over. Later in camp, gunfire broke out at night. Biletnikoff told others that Brown, a gun enthusiast, was testing his ordnance by firing out the windows. Nobody told him it was a bad idea. On the field, Brown defied the stereotype of the passive OT. His favorite move was punching his opponent in the solar plexis. John Madden said one opponent puked on the field after one of those punches. Brown also didn't like the fact that the Raiders always ran left behind Shell and Upshaw. So, once in the huddle, he demanded "could you run a few bleeping plays to my side?" loud enough for the defense to hear. Then Brown blasted his opponent five yards off the line.

G: George Buehler.

At 6'2" and 270 lb of solid muscle, Buehler was easily the strongest Raider of his time. However, Buehler wasn't mean. Actually, he was so nice that if he stepped on an opponent's foot, he'd say he was sorry. According to John Madden, Buehler got depressed every year because he wasn't a doctor like his father, uncle, and brother. His therapy was building remote-controlled toys. One year, he brought a remote-controlled plane to camp. But when he buzzed Dave Casper, Casper heaved a handfull of rocks at the plane which crashed into a hundred pieces. The next year, he brought a remote-controlled tank to retrieve his mail and told Casper not to touch it or he'd rip Dave's face off. The tank worked but teammates commandeered it for jokes. They attached strings of firecrackers to the tank and sneak it behind teammates and coaches.

C: Jim Otto.

Jim Otto was about the only talent the Raiders had in 1960. He
was an overlooked free agent. Otto was so tough that he once played on a
broken ankle. That made him one of Al Davis' favorites. Opponents
underestimated him at their peril. In 1968, then rookie MLB and future
All-Pro Bill Bergey made a great play at the sidelines right in front of
John Madden who implored Otto to block better. Bergey responded "Otto can't
block me, Coach! He's too old and slow. I'm too fast for him." A few plays
later, Otto launched himself at Bergey and hit him helmet to helmet. Bergey
got a concussion, played the rest of the game in a fog, and suffered from
nausea afterward.


QB: Ken Stabler.

Ken Stabler was born to be a Raider. He drank scotch and
chased women with abandon - he could have made Joe Namath proud which isn't
surprising since Stabler met Namath at Alabama. Snake was the leader of "The
Santa Rosa Five" which included Biletnikoff, Pete Banazak, Tony Cline, and
Dan Connors. They scored with women every night and hung up panties as
prizes. Quite juvenile. Especially since Stabler was married at the time and
got caught by his wife during one escapade. Incredibly, Stabler often threw
the game plan in the wastebasket and relied on a couple of plays. He'd throw
the up and out to Biletnikoff or the post to Branch. That didn't sit well
with Al Davis but as long as the Raiders won, he couldn't say much.

RB: Marv Hubbard.

Marv Hubbard was an 11th round pick from Colgate. He got
cut his first year, 1968, but came back in 1969 after playing semi-pro ball.
Hubbard was a very blue-collar kind of guy. He used to celebrate victories
by breaking the window of the business next to his favorite bar. Until the
owner told the Raiders he'd call the police if it happened again. Lamented
Hubbard "Where I come from, you fight a guy and then you buy him a drink.
Here, if you punch somebody, you get sued". Hubbard was wild on the field.
He chew down an amphetamine, get wide-eyed, and be ready for battle.
Especially with Chiefs MLB Willie Lanier. Hubbard would yell at Lanier that
he was coming - often when that was right where the play was going. In spite
of that, Hubbard had a career average of nearly 5 yards per carry. And he
didn't have many 20 yard runs to increase his average.

CB: Skip Thomas.

Alonzo "Skip" Thomas was nicknamed "Dr. Death". One day in
practice, teammate George Atkinson said to him "Man, you so ugly, you look
like Dr. Death". Thomas liked the name so much he painted it on his
Corvette. In addition to Corvettes, Thomas like motorcycles. He once bet
teammate Clarence Davis that a motorcycle was faster than a Corvette. The
two raced around the parking lot until Madden put an end to it. Another
time, Thomas tried putting up an Evel Knievel ramp. Madden stopped that too.
About once a month, Thomas would check into a hospital because he needed the
rest. He played as hard off the field as on. One time though, Thomas crashed
his motorcycle and told Jack Tatum he was too hurt to play. "You're gonna
play Skip" said Tatum. And he did.

Man, more "rep"... :D
Excellent posts......REP

If Davis offered advice, Freddie responded "shut the bleep up you bleeping Jew bleeper!"
Thats just great stuff.
Excellent stuff! Great history.

Ghost: And he's still employed by Al.
Our defensive line coach, Keith Millard, may not have played for us but he should have...

....having a fastpitch softball double header called off because Keith Millard got bored during training camp in Mankato, drove up to the town where I lived 10 miles away, and did donuts on three of the four fields. I only missed those two games, but a week's worth were called off. And it took the Vikings over two years to eventually pay for the re-sodding like they said they would.
What a draft !!!!!

Hey all. In the middle of 19-20 days (?) of work, long days to boot. Not much too add, but that I look foward to weighing in more in the near future....
Here is a story on Grove...

All Raiders' Grove really wants is to make a lasting impact

By Nathan Warters
Lynchburg News & Advance
February 3, 2006

Jake Grove doesn't play football for the same reasons many players today do, though he's made quite a living from the sport.

He didn't just want to earn a scholarship or be a high NFL draft pick. Make no mistake, NFL money is nice, but that's not the reason he works so hard to keep his Oakland Raiders' roster spot.

The game means more to Grove. It's his way of making a mark.

"When I was at Virginia Tech, my biggest thing was just to be remembered, and at Jefferson Forest it was the same thing," said the 6-foot-4, 300-pound offensive lineman. "I didn't just want to play. I wanted to be remembered."

So far, that hasn't been a problem for Grove, a 1998 Jefferson Forest graduate, who has taken his strong work ethic and skill to football's highest level.

The 26-year old Grove has already received his share of recognition. He was a high school All-American at Jefferson Forest and a consensus All-American at Virginia Tech.

Those who have been around him find him easy to remember.

Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer was talking to reporters Wednesday about the Hokies' 2006 recruiting class, and Grove's name came up unsolicited twice, once to illustrate how far a less-heralded recruit can take himself (Grove was considered only the 20th best player in Virginia when he committed to Tech) and once to explain how quickly a less-heralded recruit can play (Grove played in every game as a redshirt freshman).

Jefferson Forest will unveil a lasting remembrance of Grove tonight at halftime of the Cavaliers' boy's basketball game against visiting Heritage.

Grove's No. 71 will be retired to hang in JF's gym beside the No. 16 of former Virginia All-American Anthony Poindexter.

"I got my start in this whole thing that's going on right now with the NFL, college, everything that's happened because of the coaching and the people at Jefferson Forest," Grove said. "I can't thank them enough for what they did to help put me in the position that I'm in right now."

Former Jefferson Forest athletic director Ray Davidson has been planning a jersey ceremony for Grove for some time. There just hasn't been a good time to do it because of Grove's busy schedule.

"It's real important (to acknowledge players like Grove and Poindexter), because the thing that makes them special is they're good people first and good role models for the kids," current JF athletic director Troy Doss said.

Grove completed his second NFL season with the Raiders in January and is now considered an NFL veteran. That's kind of hard to believe considering it wasn't that long ago he was at Jefferson Forest lining up against players from Brookville and Liberty high schools.

"I certainly felt like his work ethic, if anything, would be the deciding factor whether or not he'd take it to the (NFL), and that's exactly what he had," said Ed Landis, Grove's former coach at Jefferson Forest and the current football coach at E.C. Glass.

"Leaving school at 6-3, 250 (pounds) as a senior, I never envisioned him being 300-plus and that big. I always felt like he had the potential to play at the next level, though, because he was such a hard worker."

Grove's Tech career went by in a whiff, capped by his selection to all five All-America teams as a senior. He started 10 games in 2002 and all 14 in 2003, and he won the Rimington Trophy as the nation's top center as a senior.

Now he's wearing the Raiders' silver and black and facing All-Pro-caliber defensive tackles for a living.

Grove started eight games as a rookie right guard after being drafted in the second round by the Raiders in 2004. He battled through a pesky knee injury last season, starting eight games (six at center, his preferred position) while missing seven others with the injury.

There's no time to rest now. Grove has accomplished a lot in his short football career, but this is a young man who wants to be remembered for greatness. He doesn't want to just be that guy from Forest who played a couple of years in the League.

"I still feel like I have a lot of things to prove," he said. "I think that's one of the biggest mistakes people make is to get comfortable with where they are because every year (NFL teams) are looking to replace guys. I want to play for a long time and be successful, and to do that you kind of have to stay on your toes.

"You can't get comfortable in what you're doing at your position or with anything. You just have to keep fighting every day and working hard."

The NFL doesn't provide guaranteed contracts, giving teams the freedom to release and sign players as they please. Because of that, Grove is motivated even more to be a productive player.

"Who knows what's going to happen next year? I just hope I'm there," Grove said. "That's the nature of the business. You never know. I want to be there. I have no reason to think I won't be there. NFL contracts aren't guaranteed, so you can get that phone call at any time."

Grove doesn't just have his sights on sticking around in the NFL, though. When his career is said and done, he wants everybody to remember him as a great player, competitor and teammate.

Who knows? Maybe someday the Raiders will retire his jersey, too.
Matt Hasselbeck's father played in one of Super Bowls...

Happy Father's Day!
June 19, 2005

The NFL has included many father/son combinations throughout its history and the Raiders are no exception. Currently, four sons of former NFL players can be found on the Raiders roster - QB Marques Tuiasosopo, LB Jay Foreman, DT Ted Washington and DE Grant Irons. In honor of Father's Day, we have compiled a list of NFL players whose fathers or sons have worn the Silver and Black over the years. Happy Father's Day Raider Nation!

OG Sam Adams, Sr. - 1972-80 New England Patriots
DT Sam Adams, Jr. - 2002 Oakland Raiders

TE Billy Cannon - 1964-1969 - Oakland Raiders
LB Billy Cannon - 1984 Dallas Cowboys

DE Tony Cline - 1970-1975 Oakland Raiders
TE Tony Cline - 1998 Oakland Raiders

DE Vince Dennery - 1941 New York Giants
LB Mike Dennery - 1974-1975 Oakland Raiders

RB Tony Dorsett - 1977-87 Dallas Cowboys, 1988 Denver Broncos
FS Anthony Dorsett - 2000-2003 Oakland Raiders

DT Alphonse Dotson - 1968-70 Oakland Raiders
DE Santana Dotson - 1992-95 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 1996-01 Green Bay Packers, 2002 Washington Redskins

RB Chuck Foreman - 1973-79 Minnesota Vikings, 1980 New England Patriots
LB Jay Foreman - 2005 Oakland Raiders

DB Dave Grayson - 1965-70 Oakland Raiders
LB David Grayson - 1987-90 Cleveland Browns, 1991 San Diego Chargers

T Herb Hannah - 1951 New York Giants
G John Hannah - 1973-85 New England Patriots
T Charley Hannah - 1983-88 Los Angeles Raiders

TE Don Hasselbeck - 1983 Los Angeles Raiders
QB Matt Hasselbeck - 1998-2000 Green Bay Packers, 2001-present Seattle Seahawks
QB Tim Hasselbeck - 2002 Philadelphia Eagles, 2003-04 Washington Redskins, 2005 New York Giants

LB Gerald Irons - 1970-75 Oakland Raiders
DE Grant Irons - 2003-present Oakland Raiders

G Gordon Jolley 1972-75 Detroit Lions, 1976-77 Seattle Seahawks
TE Doug Jolley 2002-04 Oakland Raiders

DB Joe Krakoski - 1963-66 Oakland Raiders
LB Joe Krakoski - 1986 Washington Redskins

DB Ronnie Lott - 1991-92 Los Angeles Raiders
LB Ryan Nece - 2002-present Tampa Bay Buccaneers

LB Marv Marinovich - 1965 Oakland Raiders
QB Todd Marinovich - 1991-92 Los Angeles Raiders

CB Kent McCloughan - 1965-70 Oakland Raiders
DB Dave McCloughan - 1991 Indianapolis Colts, 1992 Green Bay Packers, 1993 Seattle Seahawks

RB Charlie Smith - 1968-74 Oakland Raiders
TE Kevin Smith - 1992-95 Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders

DT Manu Tuiasosopo - 1979-83 Seattle, 1984-86 San Francisco
QB Marques Tuiasosopo - 2001-present Oakland Raiders

LB Ted Washington - 1973-82 Houston Oilers
DT Ted Washington - 2004-present Oakland Raiders

DB Howie Williams - 1964-69 Oakland Raiders
DB Gardner - 1984 Detroit Lions

CB Alvin Wyatt - 1970 Oakland Raiders
WR Antwuan Wyatt - 1997 Philadelphia Eagles
Great stuff there Mr. Pope! :D

That video brought back great memories...

Art Thoms was a wild man on the Dl.
Jack Squierk's interception in the Super Bowl sealed Washington's doom.
Jack Tatum hit like a Mack Truck. Man that guy was intense.

For those who love the Glory Days and reminiscing, be sure to buy the DVD "The Complete History of the Oakland Raiders"'s just not to be missed.
Here are more thoughts from Mario...

Getting ready for everything

(Defensive end Mario Williams is considered one of the top prospects in the 2006 NFL Draft. As a junior at North Carolina State, Williams helped lead the Wolfpack to a 7-5 record and a shutout bowl victory over South Florida. Williams' 14½ sacks and 24 tackles for loss propelled N.C. State to a No. 8 national ranking in total defense.)

(Feb. 2, 2006) -- Everything's going great. Everything we're doing out here in Phoenix is top notch. The weather is great. I like to go outside and run on the field because conditions are very good.

We're going to have a little get-together and have a party for the Super Bowl. We just talk about the game a little bit and plan on watching the game on TV. We don't analyze the game too much; we leave that up to (the media).

But before the Super Bowl, I know I have to start somewhere. I have always had a dream that I could one day be in the NFL and be playing on Super Sunday. Of course, I have always had a dream like this, but I have always taken it one step at a time from high school to college, then college to the NFL. It's a good feeling to have as well.

Mario Williams was about 290 pounds entering API, and is now bigger and stronger.

You must have confidence. You can't be too over-cocky, but at a certain point you know it's time to get it going -- time to put up or shut up. Being at API (Athletes' Performance), I'm with some NFL guys who are there now. I am going up against them, competing and giving it my all. I'm trying to make a statement as soon as I step onto the field. There's no doubt in my mind of my ability and what God has given me to go out there and put it on the field. I have no lack of confidence whatsoever.

We have position drills; whoever plays your position (among the NFLers) comes in and we'll do drills. They teach us techniques and little tips to read offensive linemen and to know what's going on before it happens. Just be prepared and know what to do to counter that. That's going well, also.

We're really, really focused on core strength here; being stable and being able to transfer power efficiently as fast as possible. The little things like that -- and it's always the little things -- are the ones that are really going to go a long way. Having good core strength and stability makes things easier, as far as having balance and leverage on your opponent. That's the No. 1 thing I really have to key in to as I actually go into the NFL and start playing.

The NFL is a little bit of a big man's game and a speed game, but at the same time, you have to be smart. You have to know what the opponent is going to do. I think it all comes down to it being mental. You need to know what to do in this situation or that. I consider myself a little bit of both a big guy and a fast guy. I've gotten a lot bigger now; I've gained straight muscle recently. I'm not putting on any bad weight. And I think I am also getting faster. From the times we wrote down, I have actually gotten faster.

The best advice to give younger players right now is just listen. The No. 1 thing that helps you out tremendously is paying attention to coaching and being coachable. Listen to the techniques. There will come a time when you have to believe in the system. If you don't, it's really going to hurt you and it's going to be tougher for things to happen, especially when you have a great coach that knows the ropes and knows the little things. That's the one thing I would do in the NFL -- just listen to what they tell me, how they tell it to me, how to come off the ball, how to use my hands. You have to learn the ways and techniques of the game.

Dominating in high school and college

Before the ball is snapped, I could hear them ask for help. A lot of times, especially toward the end of my college career, we actually ran a three-down front and I heard a tackle on almost every play yell, "cover me, cover me!" It was a lot of respect. Hopefully there will be a time in the NFL when I can get that respect.

I guess I was bigger than everybody else in high school. It was more or less just going out there and running around. We had plays and stuff like that, but when we got to college, it was more of role playing. And when I get to the NFL, it's going to be even more of that. It's going to be strictly this or that.

I've just gotten bigger every time I have stepped up to the next level. I'm already drastically bigger in the three weeks I have been training at API. I just feel like working with them and having them push us to the limit will help me be a pretty big force when training camp comes around.
I really hope we can get this guy but it's becoming more and more unlikely.

First we have the coin flip to contend with which might slide us another spot and make Mario a pipe dream. Even at #6 it's iffy if Mario will still be there. Dominating defensive ends are hard to find and most great ones are home grown -- meaning that they are drafted high and generally stay with their drafting team throughtout the best years of their career.

I'm fearful that Green Bay will take him at #5 and depending upon what the Jets do with John Abraham they could even figure into the mix for Super Mario.

Articles like the one Angry Pope posted above aren't making things any easier for the Raiders. The article shows this guy to be a hard worker and a good citizen with lofty goals for himself. Teams notice this.

The querstion for me is if Williams is gone and we have a crack at A.J. Hawk wil Al put aside the past failures at drafting linebackers and take Hawk at #6/7? It scares me because this is a situation where Al has been know to reach for a player that nobody has rated this high. I'd rather take a chance with Hawk than some guy with huge measurables that can't play football.
CrossBones said:
I really hope we can get this guy but it's becoming more and more unlikely.

First we have the coin flip to contend with which might slide us another spot and make Mario a pipe dream. Even at #6 it's iffy if Mario will still be there. Dominating defensive ends are hard to find and most great ones are home grown -- meaning that they are drafted high and generally stay with their drafting team throughtout the best years of their career.

I'm fearful that Green Bay will take him at #5 and depending upon what the Jets do with John Abraham they could even figure into the mix for Super Mario.

Articles like the one Angry Pope posted above aren't making things any easier for the Raiders. The article shows this guy to be a hard worker and a good citizen with lofty goals for himself. Teams notice this.

The querstion for me is if Williams is gone and we have a crack at A.J. Hawk wil Al put aside the past failures at drafting linebackers and take Hawk at #6/7? It scares me because this is a situation where Al has been know to reach for a player that nobody has rated this high. I'd rather take a chance with Hawk than some guy with huge measurables that can't play football.

I have this sick feeling that it's gonna be a TE, seriously. I will put a foot through my TV on draft day if our first rounder is not a defensive player.
Let's hope Grove repeats his feats of greatness.
What the F do we need a TE for? Al should move up to grab Mario. If he's at API, he's only going to get better.
Rupert said:
What the F do we need a TE for? Al should move up to grab Mario. If he's at API, he's only going to get better.

I am not in favor of a TE...I just know the old bag that runs the show around here has a thing for size/speed numbers rather than talent. Mario does light up the stat sheet, I want him, and we should move up, let's dance with the Jets!!!!
Here is the audio to in case you ever wondered about what he was like....

Vince Lombardi gives his pre-game address in the locker room of Super Bowl II....


Vince Lombardi speaking to the team in the locker room after winning Super Bowl II....

Vince II...

Packer great Willie Davis during a private locker room meeting before Super Bowl II....

Willie Davis...
Here is part of a mock draft by TSN done after the Senior Bowl...

1 (1) Texans Reggie Bush* RB USC

This might be the last hurrah for GM Charley Casserly. The Texans are happy with RB Domanick Davis, so expect Casserly to explore all options to gain extra picks and fill his team's many needs. But if Houston can't find a trading partner, Bush will be the pick. The offense would instantly become more dynamic by using Bush in multiple roles to complement Davis as the inside power runner.

2 (2) Saints Matt Leinart QB USC

New Saints head coach Sean Payton coached Drew Bledsoe and Vinny Testaverde, both big pocket passers, in Dallas. Leinart is both of those things and more. Now that the coaching situation is settled, all signs are that Leinart will be the pick here and that he'll be thrilled to be the franchise guy.

3 (3) Titans D'Brickashaw Ferguson T Va.

Ferguson exceeded high expectations at the Senior Bowl. Not only is he the best tackle in the draft, but some think he's also the best player available. Tennessee head coach Jeff Fisher and his staff coached Ferguson at the Senior Bowl; all indications are that QB Steve McNair will be back and will feel even better knowing that Ferguson will be protecting his blind side.

4 (4) Jets A.J. Hawk OLB Ohio St.

The Jets have several needs, but Hawk will be the best remaining player on the board here. He'll help anchor the linebackers unit for new head coach Eric Mangini, a disciple of Bill Belichick and the 3-4 defense.

5 (5) Packers Jimmy Williams CB Va. Tech

The Packers' defense overachieved at the end of last season, but the team's most glaring weakness is in the secondary -- especially at cornerback, where Al Harris needs help. Williams has the talent and experience to start immediately.

6 (6) Raiders Mario Williams* DE NC State

Because of Mathias Kiwanuka's struggles at the Senior Bowl, Williams has jumped to the top of the DE list for most teams. He has the power and speed to be a dominant speed rusher and a solid two-way end opposite pass rush specialist Derrick Burgess. (Pick subject to coin flip.)

7 (7) 49ers Chad Greenway OLB Iowa

Head coach Mike Nolan is defensive-minded and will continue to run a 3-4 scheme, but three of his four starting linebackers are eligible free agents. Greenway can play either outside position or weakside inside linebacker, and his playmaking ability would be welcomed by a defense struggled mightily last year. (Pick subject to coin flip.)

8 (8) Bills Haloti Ngata* DT Oregon

The Bills have been weak up the middle since Pat Williams left, and Sam Adams has struggled to remain healthy and stay out of the doghouse. The team needs a dominant run stuffer to protect its athletic linebackers and take some pressure off its pass-rushing defensive ends.
We may play on Thanksgiving Day in the future....

Mickey Spagnola

DETROIT - Not to worry about changing your Thanksgiving Day football watching tradition.

The Dallas Cowboys will continue to play in their traditional 3 o'clock time slot, according to NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue.

There have been several reports over the past two weeks claiming the Cowboys and Redskins would kick off the NFL Network's Thanksgiving night TV schedule this year, which would lend national appeal to the network's foray into broadcasting NFL regular-season games.

But when delivering his state of the union address here Friday at Super Bowl XL, Tagliabue, without directly being asked, shot down the stories that have been suggesting otherwise.

When talking about the NFL's new Thursday-Saturday TV schedule, which will be instituted late in the season, Tagliabue touched an additional game being played on Thanksgiving, saying, "Although the (Thursday-Saturday) package in some years will kick off on Thanksgiving night, we will continue to have the traditional Dallas and Detroit games on CBS and Fox. We'll have another game in a different city as the opening - as the third game on Thanksgiving - and our goal there would be to start a new tradition, which is to have a third game on Thanksgiving that would rotate around to different cities in the league who have been anxious for many years to host games."

Many Cowboys fans have been expressing concerns about the Thanksgiving Day game being played at night on the NFL Network since cable providers in many cities still don't subscribe to the league's network. But from the start, when the NFL first came up with the idea for a third Thanksgiving Day game, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said he had no interest in giving away his 3 o'clock time slot to play in the night game.

Cowboys spokesman Rich Dalrymple said Jones has always wanted to maintain the tradition of the Thanksgiving game, which has been played at Texas Stadium for the past 30 consecutive years and has become part of the team's lore.

The 2006 NFL schedule will not be released until late March or early April. But since the game will be on Fox this year, prime opponents for the holiday game would seem to be Tampa Bay or one of the NFC East teams. The Cowboys have not played Tampa Bay at Texas Stadium since the 2001 season opener, losing with rookie quarterback Quincy Carter starting, 10-6. That was the only time the Bucs have played at Dallas since 1990, when the teams played home and away
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