Thinking of Al Davis following his death, Hue Jackson fought back tears as he opened his postgame locker room speech to his Oakland Raiders team Sunday afternoon.
Davis, the longtime Raiders owner, died Saturday. He was 82. On Sunday, the day after his death, the Raiders went out and followed his mantra: Just win, baby.
It's been a hard 24 hours, and I've let it on to you guys, Jackson said in a video posted on the Raiders' Web site. Losing that man hurt me more than you know.
He stopped for a couple seconds. The sweat and tears - the strong emotions he evidently held about Davis - poured out that moment.
But you know what? Jackson continued. Like I told you, I know he loves you guys, just like he loves this coaching staff and this organization.
He stopped and then focused on the deciding play of the Raiders' 25-20 win over the Houston Texans on Sunday. The last play.
Texans quarterback Matt Schaub scrambled to his left. He looked like he could have run for a touchdown as time expired, but at the last second he decided to throw. His throw went right into the arms of Raiders safety Michael Huff.
Jackson hit the ground on his knees, covering his eyes to hide the tears. In a luxury suite, Mark Davis - Al's son - wiped his own tears.
Then in the locker room after the game, Jackson continued his speech.
That man - that was a hell of a job by you, Michael Huff -
-but I'll tell you this, Jackson said. Al Davis had his hands on that ball.
Jackson went on for nearly two minutes in what is clearly the most dramatic locker room speech this season. He spoke of how not everything was perfect, but the Raiders kept playing and fighting. And eventually, they came out with a win.
You kept fighting, because that's what that man would want you to do, Jackson said, pointing to the sky. That's what Raiders do.
That they did. Quarterback Jason Campbell completed only 15 of his 35 passes, but one was the go-ahead and eventual winning score 10 seconds into the fourth quarter. Sebastian Janikowski was there to finish the offense's drives, kicking four field goals - three of more than 50 yards. And the defense dug in when it needed to.
On the final drive, the Texans drove downfield from their own 37-yard line, starting their drive with 1:50 remaining in the game. On third-and-23 from Oakland's 39-yard line, they converted.
Schaub spiked the ball. On the next snap, he rolled left. There was an opening, but he tried to lob a pass to Jacoby Jones and was picked off by Huff.
We know he's looking down on us right now, Huff said. This win is for him. I appreciate everything he's done for this organization. He's never gone in our eyes. We'll never let him go. He's with us.
The Raiders just won, baby.