Al Davis hoped to lose draft coin toss in 2008 to save money

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The Raiders and 49ers participate in a coin toss Friday to determine which team gets the No. 9 overall pick in this year’s draft.

“I’m looking forward to competing with [Jon Gruden] in that coin toss,” 49ers General Manager John Lynch joked of his former head coach with the Buccaneers.

Gruden surely wants to win, but 10 years ago, Raiders owner Al Davis hoped to lose the coin toss for the third overall pick. Davis sent personnel executive Rich Snead and scouting director Jon Kingdon for the flip with the Falcons knowing the Raiders wanted running back Darren McFadden no matter the outcome.

The difference in cost between the picks was still substantial,” Kingdon explained of Davis’ reasoning, via Steve Corkran of

Before the rookie salary cap in 2012, high first-round picks commanded massive contracts. The Falcons ended up winning the coin toss and drafted Matt Ryan, giving him a six-year, $67.5 million deal. The Raiders took McFadden, and he signed a six-year, $60.1 million deal.

So the Raiders got their man and saved more than $7 million.