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  1. #1
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    RIP Ben Davidson



    Ben Davidson lost his battle with cancer and passed away today. He's a guy many of us know from movies and commercials unless we were fans of the game in the 60's and early 70's. Whenever they needed a badass Raider for a TV spot they would call for Davidson. He was a giant of a man with a big bushy mustache and looked more like the leader of a biker gang. His specialty was the clothesline and unlike pro wresting this is the real deal. My boss who is an old time Jets fan always hated Davidson because he would go after Namath's legs again and again. Even in an era with a lot less rules Davidson found a way to break the few that were there. Despite that I always has a soft spot for the man who personified the Raiders defense and attitude. Ben Davidson really was Mr. Raider. RIP Ben
    He Who Dares.....Wins




  2. #2
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    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    He had a scary voice too. Like an orc with a sore throat.




  3. #3
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    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    Quote Originally Posted by Florida Art View Post
    He had a scary voice too. Like an orc with a sore throat.
    He sure did. The last thing I saw him in was that Namath documentary that HBO put out last year. That dude ate gravel for breakfast
    He Who Dares.....Wins




  4. #4
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    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    He's the guy that body slammed Len Dawson and caused a bench clearing brawl. While the players were slugging it out they looked over on the Raider sideline and there was Ben sitting on the bench watching.
    World Domination 3 Points at a Time!




  5. #5
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    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravenswintitle View Post
    He's the guy that body slammed Len Dawson and caused a bench clearing brawl. While the players were slugging it out they looked over on the Raider sideline and there was Ben sitting on the bench watching.
    I'm pretty sure I saw that game but my recollection was he did a swan dive on top of Dawson.

    The game I recall was in 1970 or 1971 & it was significant beyond its outcome because it led to an important rules change.

    Dawson & his Chiefs were up by 1 or 2 with time running out; they had the ball in their own territory but it was 3rd & non-trivial (5-10 yards IIRC). If the Raiders could stop them they'd get the ball back with just enough time; if not, ball game.

    Dawson called a naked bootleg to the right that fooled everyone & ran about 20 yards downfield with Davidson in hot pursuit. When he fell to the turf, the Mustache launched himself & tried to drive the KC QB into & through the turf. Flags flew. Chiefs WR Otis Taylor, running over to Dawson's aid, clocked another Raider, more flags flew & both benches cleared.

    When order was restored, the refs called offsetting PFs on both teams, & may have thrown Davidson & Taylor out--but at the time the rules required the down to be replayed. This time KC failed to convert & punted the ball, & Oakland drove down the field close enough for George Blanda to kick a FG for the win as time expired.

    IIRC the injustice of that play led directly to the adoption of the "dead-ball foul" rule.




  6. #6

    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    He played the bad guy in the original Conan the Barbarian. Excellent movie and a very intimidating man.




  7. #7
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    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevlar View Post
    He played the bad guy in the original Conan the Barbarian. Excellent movie and a very intimidating man.
    LOL, yeah, I remember that one. He played one of James Earl Jones' two top henchmen in the film. Really looked the part, too.




  8. #8

    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    Rexor.....click here




  9. #9

    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    Quote Originally Posted by lobachevsky View Post
    I'm pretty sure I saw that game but my recollection was he did a swan dive on top of Dawson.

    The game I recall was in 1970 or 1971 & it was significant beyond its outcome because it led to an important rules change.

    Dawson & his Chiefs were up by 1 or 2 with time running out; they had the ball in their own territory but it was 3rd & non-trivial (5-10 yards IIRC). If the Raiders could stop them they'd get the ball back with just enough time; if not, ball game.

    Dawson called a naked bootleg to the right that fooled everyone & ran about 20 yards downfield with Davidson in hot pursuit. When he fell to the turf, the Mustache launched himself & tried to drive the KC QB into & through the turf. Flags flew. Chiefs WR Otis Taylor, running over to Dawson's aid, clocked another Raider, more flags flew & both benches cleared.

    When order was restored, the refs called offsetting PFs on both teams, & may have thrown Davidson & Taylor out--but at the time the rules required the down to be replayed. This time KC failed to convert & punted the ball, & Oakland drove down the field close enough for George Blanda to kick a FG for the win as time expired.

    IIRC the injustice of that play led directly to the adoption of the "dead-ball foul" rule.
    First off, great memory. Secondly, the FG kicked by Blanda did not win the game, but rather tied it. However, that was in the days of a tie in the NFL, and the Chiefs losing that game proved as bad as them having lost it. I believe, at the end of the season, they finished a game back of Oakland for the division title, and that tie--had it been a win--would have put them in the playoffs. They finished 7-5-2 and Oakland 8-4-2. Had they won that game outright, they both would have finished 8-5-1.

    Funny how the rules of the game today seem so different from back then.

    I know I've mentioned this before, but I go back to the 4th quarter of the 2001 Tennessee/Baltimore AFC semifinal. On a 3rd and 6 or 7 deep in Baltimore territory, McNair ran a great bootleg and appeared to have just Duane Starks between him and a first down inside the Raven 20. Starks whiffed on the tackle, but Jamie Sharper ran McNair down from behind and horsecollared him to the ground about two yards shy of the first down. The next play, Keith Washington and Anthony Mitchell produced the most important play in Raven history with that blocked FG. If that had been 2011 and not 2001, Sharper is flagged for a horsecollar and the Titans have the ball inside the 10 yard line and the Raven franchise history looks a lot different. Even if Sharper doesn't commit the penalty (knowing the rule exists), Starks misses the tackle and the Titans have 1st and 10 inside the 20.
    Last edited by LukeDaniel; 07-05-2012 at 05:39 PM.




  10. #10

    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    FYI, I still consider that Sharper tackle as one of the ten move pivotal plays in the history of the franchise. Although illegal through today's eyes, it was an incredible display of determination and athleticism.




  11. #11
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    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    Quote Originally Posted by lobachevsky View Post
    I'm pretty sure I saw that game but my recollection was he did a swan dive on top of Dawson.

    The game I recall was in 1970 or 1971 & it was significant beyond its outcome because it led to an important rules change.

    Dawson & his Chiefs were up by 1 or 2 with time running out; they had the ball in their own territory but it was 3rd & non-trivial (5-10 yards IIRC). If the Raiders could stop them they'd get the ball back with just enough time; if not, ball game.

    Dawson called a naked bootleg to the right that fooled everyone & ran about 20 yards downfield with Davidson in hot pursuit. When he fell to the turf, the Mustache launched himself & tried to drive the KC QB into & through the turf. Flags flew. Chiefs WR Otis Taylor, running over to Dawson's aid, clocked another Raider, more flags flew & both benches cleared.

    When order was restored, the refs called offsetting PFs on both teams, & may have thrown Davidson & Taylor out--but at the time the rules required the down to be replayed. This time KC failed to convert & punted the ball, & Oakland drove down the field close enough for George Blanda to kick a FG for the win as time expired.

    IIRC the injustice of that play led directly to the adoption of the "dead-ball foul" rule.
    This is nearly how I remember it as well, but LukeDaniel is right - the Blanda kick simply tied the game. The Chiefs were completely robbed on the "offsetting penalties". And, I don't believe it was a belly flop by Davidson on Dawson; as I recall, it was a helmet spear to the lower back. Otis Taylor ran in and jumped Davidson, and all hell broke loose.

    I also seem to recall that Kansas City had a 6' 10" TE, Morris Stroud, who stood below the goal post on Blanda's kick and tried to jump up and "goal tend" the FG, as it barely cleared the cross bar and Stroud's outstretched fingers.

    Anyway, good memory. The game was different back then, and I always hated Ben Davidson as a player. Still, I wouldn't want to wish cancer on anyone.




  12. #12
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    Re: RIP Ben Davidson

    Quote Originally Posted by LukeDaniel View Post
    ...the FG kicked by Blanda did not win the game, but rather tied it. However, that was in the days of a tie in the NFL, and the Chiefs not winning that game proved as bad as them having lost it. I believe, at the end of the season, they finished a game back of Oakland for the division title, and that tie--had it been a win--would have put them in the playoffs. They finished 7-5-2 and Oakland 8-4-2. Had they won that game outright, they both would have finished 8-5-1.

    Funny how the rules of the game today seem so different from back then.
    In the fog of 40+ years, what stuck with me was the Davidson swan dive & Taylor's retaliation. (Upon further review of an imperfect memory, I don't think the guy he clobbered was actually en route to piling on, I think he just hit the nearest body wearing black&silver as hard as he could.)

    I do distinctly remember the zeebs calling the offsetting PFs & making them replay the down & thinking, WTF? That ain't right!!

    I know I've mentioned this before, but I go back to the 4th quarter of the 2001 Tennessee/Baltimore AFC semifinal. On a 3rd and 6 or 7 deep in Baltimore territory, McNair ran a great bootleg and appeared to have just Duane Starks between him and a first down inside the Raven 20. Starks whiffed on the tackle, but Jamie Sharper ran McNair down from behind and horsecollared him to the ground about two yards shy of the first down. The next play, Keith Washington and Anthony Mitchell produced the most important play in Raven history with that blocked FG. If that had been 2011 and not 2001, Sharper is flagged for a horsecollar and the Titans have the ball inside the 10 yard line and the Raven franchise history looks a lot different. Even if Sharper doesn't commit the penalty (knowing the rule exists), Starks misses the tackle and the Titans have 1st and 10 inside the 20.
    Interesting. I couldn't watch that game & was unaware of the byplay. Thanks!

    The rules don't change much until & unless something egregiously unjust forces the NFL to do something--something like, oh, a guy who specialized in the horse-collar breaking the legs of two star players in the same game & 4 others in the course of a single season.

    The KC-OAK game recounted above pointed up a logical deficiency in the rules. Once Dawson went down, the play should have been over, with no chance for a canny Raider to provoke a brawl that would lead to replaying the down. (Not that it was premeditated, but you bet your ass that if the possibility had occurred to Davidson he wouldn't have hesitated.)




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