1978 would prove to be an up and down year for the silver and black. The Raiders were plagued by one of quarterback Kenny Stabler's worst seasons, tossing 16 TD's, while throwing 30 interceptions. The running game also fell off from seasons past. Even the great wide receiver Cliff Branch, only caught one touchdown. The season started off with a 14 to 6 loss in Denver. The Raiders would rally to a 5 – 3 start, then climbed to 8 – 4. After a last minute loss to the Seattle Seahawks 17 – 16, a team beat the Raiders twice in the same season for the first time since 1965. Then the Broncos completed their sweep of the Raiders with a 21 – 6 victory in Oakland, followed by a 23 – 6 defeat in Miami. A meaningless 27 – 20 victory over the Minnesota Vikings kept the Raiders consecutive seasons with a winning record streak alive. This was head coach John Madden's last season as head coach of the team. He was replaced by new coach Tom Flores.
During this game, one of the most famous plays known as the Holy Roller occurred. Kenny Stabler fumbled the ball and Pete Banaszak moved it forward allowing Dave Casper to finish the job for a touchdown. It is one of the most controversial plays in the history of the NFL.