These are truly sad times for Raider Nation.
Today, George Blanda passed away at the age of 83. The team released the following statement.
We are deeply saddened by the passing of the great George Blanda. George was a brave Raider and a close personal friend of Raiders Owner Al Davis.
When the Raiders Owner presented him for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1981, Davis called Blanda the greatest clutch player the game of pro football has ever known.
The Miracle of George Blanda in 1970 will live for eternity in the history of the Raiders as well as all of professional football. That year, Blanda’s last-minute heroics as a quarterback and place kicker resulted in four victories and a last second tie for the Silver and Black.
Our heart goes out to his wife Betty and the Blanda family and we grieve with them for our great friend.
A private funeral service will be held for the family. A memorial service will be held with the time and place to be announced at a later date.
A truly unique talent, Blanda had the longest career in the history of professional football playing a full 26 seasons of pro ball. The QB/Kicker retired as the all-time leading scorer in pro football history. Until recently, Blanda was still the Raiders’ all-time leading scorer. His mark of 863 points bested now only by Sebastian Janikowski.
Blanda also held the record for most interceptions ever thrown in a career as well. That mark has since been broken by Brett Favre.
This marks yet another tragic passing of a Raider legend. It was just about two months ago that Raider Nation bid farewell to Jack Tatum.
Our thoughts are with Blanda’s family.