This day in history: Raiders' first-ever game vs Dallas Texans

Fifty-three years ago on this day (7/31/1960) the Oakland Raiders played their first-ever game; a preseason exhibition against the Dallas Texans at Kezar Stadium on a chilly mid-summer afternoon.

The Raiders lost 20-13 to the team we now know as the Kansas City Chiefs, but the Raiders – a three-touchdown underdog – fared better than most expected.

As the last team to join the AFL in 1960, the Raiders weren't afforded the same initial roster-building opportunities that the rest of the AFL’s seven franchises had.

The Raiders didn't look shorthanded against the Texans when they took a 7-0 lead in the first quarter off of Buddy Allen’s two-yard touchdown run. The play was set up in part by a 25-yard pass from Tom Flores to Billy Lott – the longest play from scrimmage by either team that day.

The Texans struck back in the second quarter when Cotton Davidson avoided the Raiders’ rush and "side armed" a five-yard touchdown pass to Chris Burford. The Texans then converted the AFL’s first-ever two-point conversion to take an 8-6 lead.

After that the Texans never relinquished the lead. However, in the fourth quarter the Raiders were only a yard shy of going on top.

Early in that quarter, Allen punched in his and the Raiders’ second touchdown of the game with a one-yard run. The Raiders tried to take the lead - down 14-13 - on a two-point conversion, but Billy Lott’s run attempt was stopped short of the goal line. The Texans then added an insurance touchdown and the rest is history.

The Texans out gained the Raiders 313-175, but their four fumbles (two lost) kept the Raiders in the game. Lott put in the Raiders’ top offensive performance. He caught five passes for 70 yards. Allen scored the Raiders’ only touchdowns, but overall he had a tough day rushing with only 37 yards off of 16 carries.

Tom Flores, yes the same Flores that led the franchise to two Super Bowl titles as a head coach, took almost all of the snaps at quarterback. He completed 14 of his 25 passes for 151 yards and threw one interception.

The Raiders' brass was disappointed by a less-than capacity crowd of 12,000 for their inaugural game. However, it would be their second-best draw to Kezar Stadium that season. These were the lean-and-mean years of the AFL, with better times ahead.

The Raiders’ next meeting with the Texans was in the second week of the regular season. This time the visiting Texans waxed the Raiders 34-16, but a few weeks later the Raiders got their revenge with a 20-19 upset victory at the Cotton Bowl.

A rivalry was born.

Additional Info

- The first-ever game in Raiders history kicked off at 1:30pm PST. Tickets cost $4.50. The Raiders said they sold 20,000 tickets, but as mentioned before only 12,000 people showed up. This was a benefit game for the Children's Hospital of the East Bay.

- The Raiders played six homes games (four regular season, two exhibitions) at Kezar Stadium before they moved to Candlestick Park late in the 1960 season. Kezar Stadium was the San Francisco 49ers’ home from 1946-1970.

- The Raiders first-ever regular season game occurred on September 11, 1960. The then donned in gold and black Raiders lost at home 37-22 to the Houston Oilers – the AFL’s champions in ’60 and ’61.

- The Raiders played the Texans/Chiefs nine times in the preseason from 1960-1969. Since then the two teams haven’t met once in the NFL’s summer season.

Raiders vs. Dallas Texas/Kansas City Chiefs in the preseason:

Season Date Result Where
1960 7/31/1960 Texans 20-13 San Francisco, CA
1962 8/18/1962 Texans 22-6 Midland, TX
1962 8/4/1962 Texans 13-3 Atlanta, GA
1963 8/17/1963 Chiefs 35-21 Seattle, WA
1964 8/9/1964 Chiefs 21-14 Oakland, CA
1965 8/22/1965 Raiders 23-6 Oakland, CA
1967 8/19/1967 Chiefs 48-0 Portland, OR
1968 8/24/1968 Chiefs 31-21 Kansas City, MO
1969 8/2/1969 Chiefs 23-17 Birmingham, AL


Undefined. (1960, August 27). Professional Football For a Good Cause [Advertisement]. Oakland Tribune, pp. 10. Retrieved July 27, 1960, from NewspaperARCHIVE.

Stirling, Scotty. (1960, August 1). Raiders Display Punch In Debut. Oakland Tribune, pp. 37, 41. Retrieved July 31st, 2013, from NewspaperARCHIVE.