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Titans Owner Bud Adams Dies At 90

Bud Adams brought professional football to two different cities. The way of the world is that he'll largely be remembered for taking it away from Houston.

Just three days after the passing of Bum Phillips—who Adams hired, then fired as Oilers coach—the Titans owner has reportedly passed away from natural causes at the age of 90. Adams had been in failing health, so it's unlikely that the statement on Phillips's death attributed to him actually came from Adams.


Adams, along with Lamar Hunt, spearheaded the "foolish club"—eight wealthy men who were denied NFL franchise ownership, and started the rival AFL in 1960. By instituting pro football's first revenue sharing plans, the AFL became a legitimate competitor to the NFL, and forced a merger in 1966.

After a game of chicken with Houston over a publicly funded stadium, Adams actively shopped the Oilers around, and in 1995 reached an agreement with Nashville to move the team. He's never been quite forgiven in Houston, even though the Texans began play in 2002.

The notorious micromanager became something of an absentee owner in recent years thanks to health problems. Adams's death opens up a whole lot of uncertainty in Nashville. He was owner, chairman, president, and CEO, and neither of his two daughters are involved with running the team. There is no apparent succession plan in place, so the most likely scenario sees the Titans being put up for sale.

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