Brown, Raiders part ways after 16 seasons
NFL.com wire reports
NAPA, Calif. (Aug. 4, 2004) -- Tim Brown is leaving the Oakland Raiders after 16 prolific seasons.
Salary cap constraints and the reality of reduced playing time for the 38-year-old veteran persuaded owner Al Davis to part ways with the last former member of the Los Angeles Raiders. Brown, who will be released Thursday, Aug. 5, holds most of the club's receiving records, and his 240 games in Silver and Black are the most in franchise history.
"This is a very emotional day for me. I have fought the battle as much as I possibly could and tried to restore the image as much as possible to the Raiders," Brown said Wednesday.
"This won't be the end of Tim Brown. I'll surface somewhere else, probably."
He ranks second in NFL history with 14,734 yards receiving and third with 1,070 catches. His 99 touchdown receptions are tied with Don Hutson for fourth, and his 14,734 all-purpose yards are fifth.
Brown won the Heisman Trophy at Notre Dame before the Raiders drafted him in 1988. He soon established himself as an elite receiver, appearing in nine Pro Bowls and going nine straight seasons with at least 1,000 yards receiving from 1993-2001.
Brown had 52 catches for 567 yards and two touchdowns last season, but his streak of 175 starts ended in December.
He also appeared to fall out of favor with former coach Bill Callahan. Jerry Porter and 41-year-old Jerry Rice will be the Raiders' top receivers this season.
Though Brown's quiet style sometimes seemed at odds with the Raiders' brash image, he was one of the team's most popular players even during the franchise's dismal seasons after returning to Oakland.
"It's emotionally difficult. It's a part of your life," Davis said. "Other than your family, this is your family. We've had many great players, but there are certain players you fall for. It's tough to lose him."
Fire It Up, Let the engines roll, It's time to burn it down