COVERING ALL THINGS SILVER AND BLACK

Raiders Drew Smallest Crowd Since the AFL Days

By Joe Kukura
|  Wednesday, Oct 6, 2010  |  Updated 1:06 PM PDT
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Hear the <a title=Oakland Raiders react after their 31-24 loss against the Houston Texans." />

Hear the Oakland Raiders react after their 31-24 loss against the Houston Texans.

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Should you decide for whatever reason to watch the NFL.com replay of the Oakland Raiders' 31-24 loss to the Houston Texans, you might actually hear some crickets chirping in the background.

Per Jerry McDonald of the Oakland Tribune, Sunday's game had an announced attendance of only 32,218. The Oakland-Alameda Coliseum has nearly twice that much seating for an NFL game.

The New York Times reports that this is the lowest attendance at a non-strike Oakland Raiders home game in 33 years. The last time the Raiders drew so small a crowd for a non-replacement player game was in 1967, when they played the Buffalo Bills on Christmas Eve.

People, the Raiders were not even an NFL team back then. They were still an AFL team, as the AFL and NFL did not merge until 1970.

To be fair, Jerry Springer and "America's Got Talent" were in town this weekend.

Raiders-Texans was also the worst-attended NFL game of the last six years. Not since the Arizona Cardinals hosted Tampa Bay in 2004 has an NFL game drawn so few paying fans.

That's an ignominious mark, but Raider Nation should not worry. The low-attendance record will probably be broken by another NFL fan base, when Jacksonville hosts the Texans this coming Nov. 14.

Joe Kukura is a freelance writer who would note that when the Raiders set their low-attendance mark in 1967, they made it to Super Bowl II that season.

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