The Raiders lost their final six games and missed the playoffs in 1995, then sputtered to a 4-7 start in '96. By then word of the curse was spreading, and Oakland's Pro Bowl receiver, Tim Brown, decided to take action. Brown called one of the voodooers, with whom he was friendly, and pleaded with him to defrost the photo. The hexer agreed, but after Oakland won three straight to get into the playoff race, he called Brown and left a message that made it clear friendship went only so far: "Timmy, f— you. His picture goes back in the freezer." The Raiders lost their last two games and tied for last in the AFC West.
While vying to succeed White, Bugel pleaded with the same former employee to "take Al's picture out of the freezer." The employee did—for now.