Davis skips trip to Tampa

Updated: December 29, 2008, 8:01 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

For the first time since 1979, Al Davis wasn't in the owner's box watching his Oakland Raiders play an NFL game.

Al Davis

Davis

Davis heeded the advice of his doctors and did not make the round-trip flight to Tampa, Fla., allowing swelling in his right knee and ankle to recover. Davis had a brief hospital stay earlier this month after a fall.

"The doctors told him it's probably not the best thing to spend 10 or 12 hours in the air," Raiders executive John Herrera said, according to the Contra Costa Times.

Herrera said that to his recollection, it was the first Raiders game Davis did not attend since 1979, when he missed a game to be with his wife, Carole, who was hospitalized after a heart attack. Davis joined the Raiders organization in 1963.

Herrera tried to emphasize, however, that Davis is feeling well.

"I can't emphasize this enough. He's feeling good. He wanted to make the trip and expected to make the trip, but the decision was made that it was not a good idea because of his knee and ankle," Herrera said, according to the newspaper. "He was a little ticked off that he didn't make the trip, but he knew he'd better listen to what the doctor said."