It seems like just the other day we were talking about players in the 90s. Now we're nearly done with the 80s which means the season continues to get closer and closer. The choice at number 81 should be a pretty obvious one...
Who wore it best: WR Tim Brown (1988-2003)
Dubbed "Mr Raider", Tim Brown holds every Raider receiving record and is among the top performer in nearly every NFL receiving category. He played 16 seasons with the Raiders. The former Heisman Trophy winner out of Notre Dame was the 6th overall pick by the Raiders in the 1988 draft and immediately made the Pro Bowl - as a kick returner. He would again be named to the Pro Bowl as a return man three years later.
It wasn't until his fifth season in the NFL in 1992 that he became a full time starting wide receiver. He would then surpass 1000 yards receiving the following season and eight more seasons in a row after that. He would be named to the Pro Bowl 7 times in that span. Oddly enough, it wasn't until after his final 1000-yard season that the Raiders reached the Super Bowl. That was when for the first time since early in his career, he evenly shared the load with another receiver - Jerry Rice.
And as great of a wide receiver as we all know him to be, he is also the Raiders' all time leading return man as well as the oldest player in NFL history to have a kick return for a touchdown. He was 35 years old when he did it. For all these reasons, he finally got the call to the Hall this year with the induction ceremony this August.
Who's wearing it now: TE Mychal Rivera
Rivera has been the Raiders top tight end the past two seasons. He has certainly outplayed his sixth round draft position. He wasn't even the first tight end the Raiders chose in that draft. They grabbed Nick Kasa earlier in the same round and Kasa is no longer on the team.
This season Rivera may no longer be the top tight end on this team. They drafted Clive Walford in the third round and he is the projected starting tight end. But regardless, Rivera will see the field quite a bit. New offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave likes to use two tight end sets. He also loves having an H-back. Rivera has always had H-back qualities and it seems he could thrive in that role while receiving plenty of passes in this offense.