John Madden, who rose to fame in the NFL first as the coach of the Oakland Raiders and later as one of their most popular television commentators, died Tuesday at age 85.
“There will never be another John Madden and we will always be indebted to him for all he did to make football and the NFL what they are today, ” League Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement.
The NFL, which announced Madden’s death, did not specify the cause of his death.
“Few individuals meant as much to the growth and popularity of professional football as Madden, whose impact on the sport on and off the field was immeasurable,” the Raiders argued in a press release.
Madden was born in 1936. He was a prominent offensive lineman at San Mateo College in California and came to professional soccer in 1958, selected by the Philadelphia Eagles, with whom he spent only one season due to a knee injury that ended his career. the trajectory as a player.
Four years later, at the age of 26, he became an assistant coach at Allan Hancock College to make the jump in 1963 to San Diego State as a defensive assistant.
His rapid rise in coaching led him to the NFL in 1967 when the Oakland Raiders hired him to coach their linebackers, a year later Oakland would reach its first Super Bowl.
Madden coached the Raiders for ten seasons, from 1969 to 1978, and his greatest success as a manager was a victory in Super Bowl XI with the Raiders in the 1976 season, in which the Oaklands beat the Minnesota Vikings ( 32-14)
He had 103 wins, 32 losses and 7 draws in the regular season with the Oakland franchise, which under Madden never had a negative balance course.
As a coach, he never had a losing season, including postseason games. In the year he won the first Super Bowl in Raiders history, his record was 13-1.
In 1978 he retired from the pitch and began a successful career as a sportscaster in which he achieved NFL icon status.
Since 1979, Madden became a very popular analyst and game commentator in the US – he went through all the major networks in the United States – and his opinions and explanations during the games marked several generations of American football fans.
He began his television career on CBS as soon as he left his coaching career, then he worked for Fox and ABC, and in 2009 he closed his fabulous career on the small screen with NBC.
Madden combined detailed and meticulous tactical explanations of the matches with a colloquial, funny, and very close style.
He also became very famous for his use of the telestrator, a device that allowed him to draw lines on the television image to explain very clearly the movements of the players.
It also gave its name to the famous and long-lived saga of video games “Madden” about the NFL that Electronic Arts launched.
Madden was afraid of flying, so he tirelessly crossed the country in a bus known as the Madden Cruiser.
He was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 2006 and in his speech of appreciation he was very proud of his professional career.
“I have never worked a day in my life. I went from being a player to a coach and then to a commentator. I am the luckiest guy in the world,” he said.