1968 Oakland Raiders Season
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1968 Oakland Raiders Season

1968 Oakland Raiders season
OwnerF. Wayne Valley
Head coachJohn Rauch
Home fieldOakland-Alameda County Coliseum
Division place1st AFL Western
Playoff finishLost AFL Championship Game
(at Jets) 23-27

The 1968 Oakland Raiders season was the team's ninth season in both Oakland and the American Football League. It saw the team try to improve upon its 13-1 record from 1967. They ultimately finished one game short of matching that year's result; their 12-2 finish still ensured that they would lead the league in wins for a second consecutive year. They were led by third-year head coach John Rauch. They tied with Kansas City for the division title, which was settled by an unscheduled tiebreaker playoff, won 41-6 by the Raiders in Oakland.

The season featured a growing rivalry between the Raiders and the New York Jets, led by fourth-year superstar quarterback Joe Namath. The teams met twice in 1968: the first was on November 17 in Oakland, which saw the Raiders complete a stunning fourth-quarter comeback over the Jets, scoring two touchdowns in nine seconds.[1] Known today as the Heidi Game,[2] it remains one of the most famous in AFL/NFL history. They paired up six weeks later in the AFL Championship Game in New York, where Namath's Jets emerged victorious in a 27-23 upset on December 29.[3] Two weeks later, the Jets upset the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III.

The 1968 season is also notable for a few changes to the team including the additions of George Atkinson, Art Shell, and Ken Stabler. All three won a championship with the Raiders eight years later in Super Bowl XI. Additionally, Shell in 1989, and Stabler in 2016, were both inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.


NFL Draft

1968 Oakland Raiders draft
Round Pick Player Position College Notes
2 52 Ken Stabler * +  QB Alabama
3 80 Art Shell * +  T Maryland Eastern Shore
      Made roster    +   Pro Football Hall of Fame    *   Made at least one Pro Bowl during career



Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance Recap
1 Bye
2 September 15 at Buffalo Bills W 48-6 1-0 War Memorial Stadium 43,057 Recap
3 September 21 at Miami Dolphins W 47-21 2-0 Miami Orange Bowl 30,021 Recap
4 September 29 at Houston Oilers W 24-15 3-0 Houston Astrodome 46,098 Recap
5 October 6 Boston Patriots W 41-10 4-0 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum 44,253 Recap
6 October 13 San Diego Chargers L 14-23 4-1 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum 53,257 Recap
7 October 20 at Kansas City Chiefs L 10-24 4-2 Municipal Stadium 50,015 Recap
8 October 27 Cincinnati Bengals W 31-10 5-2 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum 37,083 Recap
9 November 3 Kansas City Chiefs W 38-21 6-2 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum 53,357 Recap
10 November 10 at Denver Broncos W 43-7 7-2 Mile High Stadium 50,002 Recap
11 November 17 New York Jets W 43-32 8-2 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum 53,118 Recap
12 November 24 at Cincinnati Bengals W 34-0 9-2 Nippert Stadium 27,116 Recap
13 November 28 Buffalo Bills W 13-10 10-2 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum 39,883 Recap
14 December 8 Denver Broncos W 33-27 11-2 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum 47,754 Recap
15 December 15 at San Diego Chargers W 34-27 12-2 San Diego Stadium 40,698 Recap


  • Intra-division opponents are in bold text.
  • Saturday night (September 21), Thursday (November 28: Thanksgiving)


Round Date Opponent Result Venue Attendance Recap
Divisional December 22 Kansas City Chiefs W 41-6 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum 53,357 Recap
AFL Championship December 29 at New York Jets L 23-27 Shea Stadium 62,627 Recap


AFL Western Division
Oakland Raiders 12 2 0 .857 6-2 453 233 W8
Kansas City Chiefs 12 2 0 .857 7-1 371 170 W5
San Diego Chargers 9 5 0 .643 5-3 382 310 L2
Denver Broncos 5 9 0 .357 1-7 275 404 L3
Cincinnati Bengals 3 11 0 .214 1-7 215 329 L3

Note: Tie games were not officially counted in the standings until 1972.

Game summaries

Week 11 vs. Jets

Week 12 vs. Bills

Thanksgiving Day


HC: John Rauch

Ast: John Polonchek (RB), Ollie Spencer (OL), Tom Dahms (DL), John Madden (LB), Charlie Sumner (DB), Marv Marinovich (Str)



  1. ^ "Raiders stun Jets with nine-second blitz". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. November 18, 1968. p. 3B.
  2. ^ "Heidi upstages pro football". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. November 18, 1968. p. 3B.
  3. ^ Chass, Murray (December 30, 1968). "Super Bowl stage set as Baltimore, New York win: Weeb captures 3rd grid title". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. p. 3B.
  4. ^ "Raiders coaches - Silver and Black Report". Archived from the original on April 18, 2010. Retrieved 2010.

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