There has not been a ton of winning for the Raiders franchise over the last 20 years, but that has not stopped Raider Nation from continuing to grow.
It was a nice 50-degree Sunday evening at the Oakland Coliseum on January 19, 2003, when the Raiders beat the Tennessee Titans by 17 points to advance to Super Bowl XXXVII. You read that sentence and it immediately brought you right back to wherever you were at that point in your life.
I remember it like it was yesterday…who I was, where I was…when the Raiders were the best.
That was a different lifetime for many of us. The immediate future for the Silver and Black seemed bright 20 years ago, however, the Raiders haven’t won a playoff game since, holding the third longest playoff win drought in the NFL (behind Detroit 31 years and Miami 22 years).
In most industries, a company that fails for 20 years, loses its customers and permanently shuts down. But the NFL is different than most industries, and Raider Nation is different than most customers.
The loyalty is unmatched.
It’s impressive that Raider Nation continues to support the organization after all that disappointment. Imagine having a microwave that didn’t heat things up most of the time, over the course of two decades. But Raiders fans care more about the shield than any kitchen appliance.
I believe Raiders fans keep coming back every season because their loyalty is on a whole different level than other NFL fan bases. I’ll explain that in detail. Pairing that with a glimmer of hope every few off-seasons is a recipe for mindless devotion.
Let’s get into the psychology of a Raiders fan’s allegiance.