Dear diary, I just figured out why I started to hate football, my most favorite childhood sport. It all happened 33 years ago when the Oakland Raiders moved to LA. I was never an Oakland fan but I was always was under the impression the word “Team” meant you stuck together on the same team at the same place, especially football teams. Since birth until I was 17 that was the norm. Stay in the same city, don’t mess up my world, life is complicated enough. The NFL was my utopia and in 1982 my perfect football world crashed. All I knew is some bastard thought it would be funny to move Oakland to LA, what the hell, did they not know my 2nd favorite team; the Rams owned that town. One city, one football team, that’s it! Plus you don’t leave the city you started in, who supported your sorry ass when you sucked until you figured out how to win a few games.
I had favorite teams all over the country. My favorite team was the Miami Dolphins, 2nd was the Los Angeles Rams & 3rd was the Minnesota Vikings. Unfortunately my home state of Washington didn’t have a professional football team until 1976, in fact the Pacific Northwest had no team until then. So as a young strapping football fan, I was forced to look among the other states to find a team. A team that desperately need my fanship to support them.
Even when the Seahawks took the field, I stayed loyal and true to my city, my team, my quarterback Robert Allen “Bob” Griese and Head Coach Don Shula. I still have a Miami Dolphin Light switch cover, (it’s in the garage now). When I got married my wife made me throw out my Dolphin bed sheets and comforter. But I didn’t jump ship, move my loyalty to a different city, I was loyal to the pigskin core and then it happened. May 12, 1977, Joseph William “Joe” Namath, “Broadway Joe”. In the twilight of his career, moved to the Los Angeles Rams. After that, it felt like players started moving to different teams like just another one night stand.
That’s it! In 1985 I stopped supporting the NFL, how could they? Then it happened, the internet and Wikipedia. Ya know, this non-loyal behavior has been going on since 1921. And then another life altering sport phenomenon happen in 2005, my home state team the Seattle Seahawks was going to the Superbowl. When stuff like this happens in your backyard, you support the home team or you become a leper. So this was my chance, I can start liking football again!
They lost the Super Bowl to the officials, I mean the Steelers that year, but that made the Hawks an official, to be reckoned with, NFL team. As a past Dolphin super fan, it feels good to be supporting my winning Hawks as a key 12th man! I am true Blue & Green but now I don’t give a crap if players come or go, GO HAWKS!
- 1921: Decatur Staleys moved to Chicago and became the Bears one year later.
- 1934: Portsmouth (Ohio) Spartans moved to Detroit and became the Lions.
- 1937: Boston Redskins moved to Washington, D.C.
- 1946: Cleveland Rams moved to Los Angeles.
- 1949: Boston Yanks moved to New York and renamed the New York Bulldogs.
- 1960: Chicago Cardinals moved to St. Louis.
- 1982: Oakland Raiders moved to Los Angeles.