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Published on 09/30/2008 at Tue Sep 30 22:20.
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Al Davis

“I sent (Lane Kiffin) a letter…. If you’ll bear with me, it’s about three pages.”

Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.

Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis went off on ex-coach Lane Kiffin late Tuesday, releasing this letter he allegedly sent Kiffin in the week following the Raiders’ 41-14 pounding by the Broncos.

In the letter, Davis accuses Kiffin of lying to the media on several occasions. He claims that the rift between he and Kiffin came to a head this offseason after Kiffin unsuccessfully campaigned for his father, Monte Kiffin, to take over the defense in Rob Ryan‘s place.

In his press conference on Tuesday (announcing offensive line coach Tom Cable as the interim Head Coach… good luck there, Tom), Davis calls Kiffin a “flat-out liar” and a master of “propaganda.” He says a lot more than that in the letter, too, detailing Kiffin’s opinion on Raiders personnel and one JaMarcus Russell. Here’s an excerpt:

I realized when I hired you that you were young and inexperienced and that there would be a learning process for you. Your mistakes on player personnel and coaches were overlooked based on our patience with you. But I never dreamt that you would be so untruthful in statements to the press as well as on so many other issues. Your actions are those of a coach looking to make excuses for not winning, rather than a coach focused on winning.

For example, with the exception of Gibril Wilson, you were involved in recruiting all free agents and determining salaries for them and you were explicit in your desire to sign Javon Walker and DeAngelo Hall amongst others. All were a must to sign in your eyes, Hall in particular, because he played for Greg Knapp in Atlanta and Knapp gave him high grades. Do not run from that now.

JaMarcuss Russell and Lane Kiffin

But wait, it gets better…

I do realize that you did not want to draft JaMarcus Russell. He is a great player. Get over it and coach this team on the field, that is what you were hired to do. We can win with this team!

This type of candid access is beyond sanity. And I’m loving every minute of it.

The best part is that some people are actually buying this. Are you kidding me? Think for half a second here, people. Al Davis is releasing this “dated” letter to help build a case against Kiffin and the inevitable lawsuit involving his contract. That letter has phony written all over it.

You can watch the press conference here (part 2 here)… Davis appears somewhat-less-than-senile in this video (perhaps the most remarkable outcome of the day). He does let fly one more shot at the Denver Broncos and Mike Shanahan, too, which is just sweet, sweet icing on the cake in my view. More on that later.

Meanwhile, interrim Raiders Head Coach Tom Cable was busy singing Kiffin’s praises. “I respect Lane Kiffin. I love the guy. I think he worked his tail off.” We hear Davis is drawing up Cable’s resignation papers already.

(H/T Deadspin for the Davis photo)

  • Aerobroncos

    hahah love the ending. “We hear Davis is drawing up Cable’s resignation papers already.” I was watching NFL total access and TD was saying how no coach in his right mind would want to coach the Raiders. That a head coach in the raiders organization is just the puppet for Mr. Davis and basically doesn’t have a say about anything. Wow. Way to completely ruin the Raiders Mr. Davis….you have Broncos Nations utmost respect and gratitude! lol

  • BroncoFan18


  • Ian Henson

    I’m being dead serious, the NFL needs to intervene, don’t think that this situation will not spill over into how the AFC West is viewed and thus Denver.

  • Jordan

    Davis looks like he is going to die soon! hahahahhaha, what a Moron

  • Kyle

    We’re at the top of again folks! Go out and vote for the article at the top left of this page or at their site!

  • Tenebrous

    “That letter has phony written all over it.”

    -Except for one little think you ostensibly forgot to mention – the letter was Fed-Ex’ed to Kiffin and so can be traced… but, by all means, do not let the truth get in the way of your hate.

  • jvill

    Ian Henson: I’m being dead serious, the NFL needs to intervene, don’t think that this situation will not spill over into how the AFC West is viewed and thus Denver.

    What?! Absolutely not! How will this spill over?

    The Lions have been a mess for nearly a decade — has that affected how the Packers, Vikings or Bears are viewed? No, it’s just been an easy win.

    Why would we want someone to intervene when our arch rival is imploding before our very eyes? Just easy win now, baby!

  • flbronc

    what a circus! i cant wait to see what happens the rest of the season.. i cant believe players havent spoken up demanding to get the hell out of there…..

    if i was a decent player who could catch on with another team quickly, i’d be asking to go the way of kiffin….

  • Kyle

    Tenebrous – with 3.5 million at stake, how hard is it to send someone a nonsensical letter that “proves” your point in the future?

    Just because someone writes a letter, doesn’t make its contents true.

  • flbronc

    who cares if he sent the letter or not. sending it via fed ex makes davis look more backhanded than not. the greviance will come down to this… kiffin is going to say that there was not cause for termination while davis contests the opposite. davis will produce evidence, such as the fed ex letter, proving that he had cause and kiffin will be able to successfully prove that all this ‘evidence’ does not prove cause for davis but rather a half baked scheme to set him up.

    when employer/employee issues happen in the real world, there is a meeting between them- face to face. the issues are fleshed out, and it is noted in the employees file containing both sides prospective and the desired next step. It’s not handled by a one sided letter sent via federal express. What a poor reflection on the management style of the raider organization. good luck attracting quality coaches in the future.

  • GreasyQtip

    Ha I love a good circus like this, as long as it isn’t the Broncos, and especially when its the Raiders for 6 years straight.
    I would like to think that this is a Phony letter, but the truth is i kind of believed it myself, Lane Kiffin looked half retarded in his press conference and dodged questions left and right. He was asked specifically about Al Davis saying that he has had contact with him and that Davis said he was a lier, Kiffin jumped right back into the same 5 words he said for each answer.
    “I can’t begin to dive into each accusation Davis made, this is hard on my family and hard on me, its a tough time for my family, and for me.”
    I think he said that line at least 5 times in hs press conference. I’m sure the truth is somewhere in the middle, but with Davis history id have to imagine he should have a hard time winning over NFL arbitrators after his coach track record. I’ll need to see some sort of evidence or a believable Kiffin before i jump on the phony letter bandwagon.

  • Jason

    As much as I love watching Al Dais fail; as much as I love seeing Al Davis plumb the depths of dysfunction; as much as love to hear Al Davis bark his mindless drivel I must say: I do sincerely feel sorry for the likes of Russel, McFadden and any other player drafted by the Raiders. In this sense it truly is the Black Hole (of potential). *Taps*

    Hats off and a moment of silence, please, for all that have died (or are dying) for the cause.

    Thank you.

  • T-Money

    I have to admit that if i ever saw that face behind a face mask….. I might just S@#% my pants.

  • Truman

    did anyone else notice that AD accuses Kiffen of “HEARTING the organization?” I know I speak for all of us when I say that I heart this situation. So much.

  • CommishCH

    Al’s grip on that team is getting tighter and tighter. And loonier and loonier.

  • mikebirty

    did you see that al wants to win two more superbowls before giving the team to his son. Why do i get this mental image of his son sitting there like scott evil at the end of goldmember?

  • Jonathan Douglas

    So, Al Davis won’t let go of his old players that aren’t producing, or let his Head Coach replace assistant coaches or bench players who won’t work to his standards. Al demands that his coach deal with a QB that’s not the coach’s choice for the position, and he refused the offer of bringing onto his staff one of the greatest Defensive minds of football.

    Yeah… Kiffin’s the one with them problem alright. His problem is poor judgment. He should have known better than to work for Al Davis.

    Mark my words, if Kiffin lands another NFL job his team will do great things (check out what Shanahan and Gruden have done since their time in Black & Silver).

  • OC Bronco

    Shanny still hasn’t been paid from Davis as far as I know. It’s actually laughable the way he gives money away to players that don’t do jack but puts on this circus to not pay a coach. Totally unbelievable really. I love it!

  • Rome

    I have to say that is on good picture of Davis…

  • Kyle

    Yes it is… saving it for a Create-a-caption in the future… :)