Memorable Raiders moments in the Oakland Coliseum

Editor's note: This is an update of a story originally posted on Dec. 24, 2018.

ALAMEDA, Calif. -- With Sunday’s game against the Jacksonville Jaguars being the Oakland Raiders' final regular-season game in Oakland, here are five memorable moments at the Oakland Coliseum, which the Raiders have called home from 1966 through 1981 and from 1995 through today. Keep in mind, should there be significant delays in the construction of the team’s new stadium in Las Vegas, the Raiders have the lease option to return to the Coliseum for the 2020 season.

The Heidi Game (Nov. 17, 1968)

Trailing Joe Namath and the New York Jets 32-29, the Raiders rallied to score two touchdowns in nine seconds, on a 43-yard touchdown pass from Daryle Lamonica to Charlie Smith and a fumble recovered for a TD by Preston Ridlehuber on the ensuing kickoff. Thing was, NBC had cut away from the game with a minute and change to play, and the Jets leading, to show the children’s movie “Heidi.” Only West Coast viewers, those listening on the radio and anyone in the Coliseum knew what had happened -- a 43-32 Oakland victory. "We walked around like we won the Super Bowl," said Raiders Hall of Fame center Jim Otto. "Because it was like winning the Super Bowl for us."

The Sea of Hands (Dec. 21, 1974)

The Miami Dolphins, the two-time defending Super Bowl champions, were leading the Raiders 26-21 with Oakland at the Miami 8-yard line with first-and goal to go. Ken Stabler drifted in the pocket and, wrapped up around the legs by Vern Den Herder, was about to hit the ground for a sack. But before his knees touched, he lofted a wobbly pass between three Dolphins to Clarence Davis, who somehow wrestled the ball away for the go-ahead score. George Blanda’s PAT gave the Raiders a 28-26 lead, but it took a Phil Villapiano interception of Bob Griese to seal the AFC divisional playoff win.

"I got that ball and I knew how much John Madden wanted to beat Don Shula and I went and gave coach the ball and he loved it," Villapiano said. "He actually said, 'That should be your ball, you made that interception.' I said, 'Nope, coach, nobody wanted that more than you and that's your ball.' I loved that. That was great. Kenny had just thrown that crazy pass into the end zone for us to take the lead? Oh my God, we couldn't lose it. We had to do it."

Beating Snake, Assassin, Ghost and the Oilers (Dec. 28, 1980)

Having acquired Ken “Snake” Stabler in a starter-for-starter deal that offseason -- the Raiders got Dan Pastorini -- the Oilers were the AFC’s preseason favorites. Instead, Stabler had to come to his old stomping grounds for a playoff game. His old teammates were not in a welcoming mood, hitting him with aplomb and picking him off two times, the final indignity a 20-yard pick-six by Lester Hayes.

"During my decade in Silver and Black, stats were not paramount to us mentally," Hayes said. "I don't speak of 'I.' Mr. Davis planted a seed in us of being successful and constantly winning. It was the daily branding of team success. Never, ever a mentality of 'I.' Mr. Davis brands you, you are branded. It's focused on team and technique, it's always 'us.' And winning. Team success. He branded our medulla."

A pair of longtime Oakland fan favorites in safety Jack Tatum and tight end Dave Casper had also been dealt to Houston. The Raiders used the 27-7 wild-card win as a springboard to Super Bowl XV, where they thumped the Philadelphia Eagles behind game MVP Jim Plunkett, who had replaced Pastorini after he suffered a broken leg in Week 5.

“The Silver and Black Are Back!” (Jan. 19, 2003)

So opined former Raiders radio announcer Greg Papa as the final seconds ticked off the clock of the Raiders’ 41-24 beatdown of the Tennessee Titans in the 2002 AFC title game, seven years after the Raiders had returned to Oakland following 13 seasons in Los Angeles. Rich Gannon, that season’s NFL MVP, passed for 286 yards and 3 touchdowns, Tim Brown caught nine passes for 73 yards, Jerry Rice had five catches for 79 yards and Oakland’s defense sacked Steve McNair twice and limited him to 194 yards passing and Eddie George to 67 yards rushing. There was no week off before the Super Bowl that year, though, and Jon Gruden, traded to Tampa Bay a year earlier, knew the Raiders intimately as the Buccaneers blew out the Raiders, who have had only one winning record and one playoff appearance since. Gruden’s return to Oakland this season has done little to ease that sting.

Brett Favre’s Seminal Showing (Dec. 22, 2003)

A day after his father’s death, a heavy-hearted Favre put on a show for the ages in Oakland. The Green Bay Packers quarterback passed for 399 yards, 4 touchdowns and zero interceptions on Monday Night Football. He had 311 passing yards and four TDs before halftime of the Packers’ eventual 41-7 victory as the Raiders limped to the finish with a 4-12 record one season after playing in the Super Bowl. Bill Callahan, who had replaced Gruden, was fired after the season and set off a stream of coaches -- Norv Turner, Art Shell, Lane Kiffin, Tom Cable, Hue Jackson, Dennis Allen, Tony Sparano, Jack Del Rio -- until Mark Davis, who took over the team following his father Al’s death on Oct. 8, 2011, coaxed Gruden out of ESPN’s Monday Night Football booth in January 2018.

Honorable (Dishonorable?) Mention

• Raiders win their first AFL title, beating the Oilers 40-7, on Dec. 31, 1967.

• Raiders lose last-ever AFL title game 17-7, to the Chiefs on Jan. 4, 1970.

• Helped by a questionable roughing the passer call on Ray “Sugar Bear” Hamilton, the Raiders rally to beat the Patriots in an AFC divisional playoff game on Dec. 18, 1976.

• Eight days later, the Raiders finally break through to win the AFC title by beating the rival Steelers 24-7 en route to winning Super Bowl XI.

• Ravens DT Tony Siragusa belly-flops onto Rich Gannon, knocking the Raiders QB out of the game and neutering Oakland’s offense in the 2000 AFC title game, a 16-3 Baltimore win on Jan. 14, 2001.

• Lane Kiffin’s final act of defiance is having the Raiders wear white away jerseys at home (or is it trotting out Sebastian Janikowski for a 76-yard field goal attempt?) in his final game as coach on Sept. 28, 2008, before Al Davis fired him.

• Lighting the Al Davis Torch before every home game began as a tradition a week after his death, on Oct. 16, 2011, a day in which the Raiders beat the Browns but lose QB Jason Campbell to injury, setting in motion the trade for Carson Palmer.

• Hue Jackson loses his composure and calls out his team after the Raiders lose the season finale to the Chargers, costing them a division title on Jan. 1, 2012, and the coach his job.

• Sio Moore and Khalil Mack hold a sack-dance party after taking down Chiefs QB Alex Smith, nearly costing the Raiders their first win of the season on Nov. 20, 2014.

Derek Carr suffers a broken right leg with the Raiders holding a 19-point lead early in the fourth quarter against the Colts, essentially ending Oakland’s dream 2016 season on Christmas Eve.

Marshawn Lynch, Oakland’s favorite son, shows off his sideline dancing in the middle of the Raiders’ 45-20 blowout victory over the Jets on Sept. 17, 2017.

• Gruden officially returns to the Raiders sidelines for the first time since the 2001 season, and the crowd greets him warmly before a season-opening 33-13 loss to the Rams, a game in which the Raiders led 13-10 at halftime, on Sept. 10, 2018.

• Reigning NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes lighting up the Coliseum sky with 278 yards passing and four TDs ... in the second quarter of the Chiefs’ 28-10 defeat of the Raiders on Sept. 15, 2019.

• Safety Karl Joseph seals a white-knuckle 26-24 win against the Los Angeles Chargers with an interception of a deep ball by Philip Rivers on Nov. 7, 2019, Joseph, though, is lost for the season on the play as he suffers a Lisfranc injury to his right foot pushing off to leap for the ball. A week earlier, Joseph closed out a last-minute win by knocking down Detroit Lions QB Matthew Stafford’s pass in the end zone.