The Las Vegas Raiders are a professional American football team based in the Las Vegas metropolitan area. The Raiders compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the league’s American Football Conference (AFC) West division. The club plays its home games at Allegiant Stadium in Paradise, Nevada, and is headquartered in Henderson, Nevada.
Founded on January 30, 1960, and originally based in Oakland, California, the Raiders played their first regular season game on September 11, 1960, as a charter member of the American Football League (AFL). They moved to the NFL with the AFL-NFL merger in 1970. The team departed Oakland to play in Los Angeles from the 1982 season through the 1994 season before returning to Oakland at the start of the 1995 season. On March 27, 2017, NFL team owners voted nearly unanimously to approve the Raiders’ application to relocate to Las Vegas. Nearly three years later, on January 22, 2020, the Raiders moved to Las Vegas.
The Raiders’ on-field fortunes have varied considerably over the years. The team’s first three years of operation (1960–1962) were marred by poor performance, financial difficulties, and spotty attendance. In 1963, the Raiders’ fortunes improved dramatically with the introduction of head coach (and eventual owner) Al Davis. In 1967, after several years of improvement, the Raiders reached the postseason for the first time. The team would go on to win its first (and only) AFL Championship that year; in doing so, the Raiders advanced to Super Bowl II, where they were soundly defeated by the Green Bay Packers. Since 1963, the team has won 15 division titles (3 AFL and 12 NFL), 4 AFC Championships (1976, 1980, 1983, and 2002), one AFL Championship (1967), and three Super Bowl Championships: XI (1976), XV (1980), and XVIII (1983). As of the end of the NFL’s 2020 season, the Raiders have an all-time regular season record of 481 wins, 440 losses, and 11 ties; their all-time playoff record currently stands at 25 wins and 19 losses.
Al Davis owned the team from 1972 until his death in 2011. Control of the franchise was then given to Al’s son Mark Davis, with Al’s wife Carol maintaining ownership. The Raiders are known for their extensive fan base and distinctive team culture. The Raiders have had 17 former players who have been enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame as well as two former coaches and Al Davis. They have previously played at Kezar Stadium and Candlestick Park in San Francisco, Frank Youell Field and Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, and the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles.