Al Davis, a pioneer in the fledgling American Football League in the 1960s and the longtime -- and oftentimes controversial -- owner of the Oakland Raiders, has passed away at the age of 82.
Davis's death was announced on Saturday morning on the Raiders' website, and details are given in this story via Fox Sports.
After three years with the Los Angeles Chargers of the AFL, Davis joined the Raiders in 1963 as general manager-head coach, and compiled a record of 23-16-3 on the sidelines, then became commissioner of the AFL in 1966.
It was Davis's vigorous pursuit of NFL stars that began talks of a merger between the two leagues, although Davis himself opposed the idea. That merger, of course, became a reality in 1970, and the Browns were one of three teams (the Colts and the Steelers were the others) that joined the brand-new American Conference to bring balance to the NFL's new lineup.
A true pioneer and also a true rogue at times, but someone who will be missed.
Rest in peace, Mr. Davis.