1997 Tennessee Oilers season
Head Coach Jeff Fisher
Home Field Liberty Bowl
Record 8–8
Place 3rd AFC Central
Playoff Finish did not qualify
Previous Season Next Season
1996 1998

The 1997 season was the Tennessee Oilers 38th season and their 28th in the NFL. The Oilers finished the season with 8 wins and 8 losses, and did not qualify for the playoffs. The head coach was Jeff Fisher, and the team played their home games at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium. The 1997 season was the first season that the team was known as the Tennessee Oilers, following their move from Houston.

Offseason[edit | edit source]

NFL Draft[edit | edit source]

Pick # NFL Team Player Position College
18 Tennessee Oilers Kenny Holmes Defensive end Miami
46 Tennessee Oilers Joey Kent Wide Receiver Tennessee
75 Tennessee Oilers Denard Walker Cornerback Kent State
81 Tennessee Oilers Scott Sanderson Offensive Tackle Washington State
98 Tennessee Oilers Derrick Mason Wide Receiver Michigan State
107 Tennessee Oilers Pratt Lyons Defensive Lineman Troy State
143 Tennessee Oilers George McCullough Defensive Back Baylor
181 Tennessee Oilers Dennis Stallings Linebacker Illinois
216 Tennessee Oilers Armon Williams Linebacker Arizona

Personnel[edit | edit source]

Staff[edit | edit source]

1997 Tennessee Oilers staff
Front Office
  • Owner/Chairman of the Board/President – Bud Adams
  • Executive Vice President/General Manager – Floyd Reese
  • Director of Player Personnel – Rich Snead
  • Director of College Scouting – Glenn Cumbee

Head Coaches

Offensive Coaches


Defensive Coaches

Special Teams Coaches

Strength and Conditioning

  • Strength and Conditioning – Steve Watterson

Roster[edit | edit source]

1997 Tennessee Oilers roster

Running Backs

Wide Receivers

Tight Ends

Offensive Linemen

Defensive Linemen


Defensive Backs

Special Teams

Reserve Lists

Practice Squad

Rookies in italics

Regular season[edit | edit source]


Tennessee Oilers Inaugural Season Logo

The Oilers' new stadium would not be ready until 1999, however, and the largest stadium in Nashville at the time, Vanderbilt Stadium on the campus of Vanderbilt University, seated only 41,000. At first, Bud Adams rejected Vanderbilt Stadium even as a temporary facility and announced that the renamed Tennessee Oilers would play the next two seasons at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Memphis. The team would be based in Nashville, commuting to Memphis only for games—in effect, consigning the Oilers to 32 road games for the next two years. Even though this arrangement was acceptable to the NFL and the Oilers at the time, few people in either Memphis or Nashville were pleased by it. Memphis had made numerous attempts to get an NFL team (including the Memphis Hound Dogs and the Memphis Grizzlies court case), and many people in the area wanted nothing to do with a team that would be lost in only two years—especially to longtime rival Nashville. Conversely, Nashvillians showed little inclination to drive over 200 miles (300 km) to see "their" team. As a result, attendance at the Liberty Bowl was disastrous: fewer than 18,000 fans came to the stadium to see the Oilers, a number smaller than the attendance figures the team was getting in Houston after they had announced the move, and smaller than the fan bases the USFL's Memphis Showboats and XFL's Memphis Maniax would draw to the same stadium (although this was larger than the attendance for the CFL's Memphis Mad Dogs).

Schedule[edit | edit source]

Week Date Opponent Result Record Location Attendance
1 August 31, 1997 Oakland Raiders W 24–21 1–0 Liberty Bowl
2 September 7, 1997 at Miami Dolphins L 16–13 1–1 Pro Player Stadium
3 Bye week
4 September 21, 1997 Baltimore Ravens L 36–10 1–2 Liberty Bowl
5 September 28, 1997 at Pittsburgh Steelers L 37–24 1–3 Three Rivers Stadium
6 October 5, 1997 at Seattle Seahawks L 16–13 1–4 Kingdome
7 October 12, 1997 Cincinnati Bengals W 30–7 2–4 Liberty Bowl
8 October 19, 1997 Washington Redskins W 28–14 3–4 Liberty Bowl
9 October 26, 1997 at Arizona Cardinals W 41–14 4–4 Sun Devil Stadium
10 November 2, 1997 Jacksonville Jaguars L 30–24 4–5 Liberty Bowl
11 November 9, 1997 New York Giants W 10–6 5–5 Liberty Bowl
12 November 16, 1997 at Jacksonville Jaguars L 17–9 5–6 ALLTEL Stadium
13 November 23, 1997 Buffalo Bills W 31–14 6–6 Liberty Bowl
14 November 27, 1997 at Dallas Cowboys W 27–14 7–6 Texas Stadium
15 December 4, 1997 at Cincinnati Bengals L 41–14 7–7 Cinergy Field
16 December 14, 1997 at Baltimore Ravens L 21–19 7–8 Memorial Stadium
17 December 21, 1997 Pittsburgh Steelers W 16–6 8–8 Liberty Bowl

Standings[edit | edit source]

Template:1997 AFC Central standings

Awards and records[edit | edit source]

Milestones[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

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