Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams dies at 90

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(CNN) — K.S. “Bud” Adams Jr., the founder and owner of the Tennessee Titans/Houston Oilers football franchise and a co-founder of the American Football League, died Monday morning at his home in Houston, the team said.

He was 90.

Adams owned the team for more than 53 years, starting in Houston, where his Oilers began play in 1960 as a charter member of the NFL’s new competitor, the AFL.

Adams, an oil company founder, teamed with other businessmen, including eventual Dallas Texans and Kansas City Chiefs owner Lamar Hunt, to form the eight-team AFL in 1959. The Oilers won two AFL championships before the league merged with the NFL in 1970.

The Oilers franchise moved to Nashville in 1997, and the team eventually became known as the Tennessee Titans.

His franchise reached the Super Bowl once during his stewardship — in January 2000, when the Titans lost 23-16 to the St. Louis Rams.

CNN’s Jillian Martin and Jason Hanna contributed to this report.

Statement from Rams head coach Jeff Fisher on passing of Bud Adams

“I’m extremely saddened to hear of the passing of Bud Adams. Mr. Adams gave me my first opportunity to be a head coach in the NFL, and I’m eternally grateful to him for that. We enjoyed a great deal of success together during my 17 seasons with the organization, and I’ll cherish those memories for the rest of my life. My respect for Mr. Adams goes well beyond the owner/coach relationship that we shared for many years. He was a pioneer in the football business. He played a key role in creating and sustaining the American Football League, which helped push the popularity of our game to where it is today. My thoughts and prayers are with the Adams family during this difficult time.”