clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Raiders Countdown to Kickoff: 43: Who wore it best, who's wearing it now

New, comments

On to day two of training camp and two weeks from the Raiders first preseason game. As for regular season action, that's 43 days away. And with that we look at the best to wear the number 43. And he's a player who was in attendance at training camp yesterday along with a host of other Raider legends to get the first look at the current Raiders.

Who wore it best: S George Atkinson (1968-77)

The first great Raider safety. He stalked the middle of the Raiders defensive secondary for ten years from 1968-77 as part of the famed ‘Sould Patrol'. He was the master of getting in opponents' heads as part of some of the most ruthless defenders the NFL has ever seen. He might be most well-known for the forearm to the head of Steelers unsuspecting wide receiver Lynn Swann that knocked him out of the game with a concussion. That same season he and that Raiders defense helped lead the Raiders to their first Super Bowl win in 1976, beating Swann and the Steelers in the AFC Championship along the way.

Atkinson was named to the AFL All Star team in his first two seasons in the NFL, the first as a punt returner. In fact his 148 punts for 1,247 yards and 3 TDs is third in Raiders history. He also had 30 career interceptions which is 5th all-time in team history.

His son signed with the Raiders last offseason as an undrafted free agent running back out of Notre Dame. After spending most of last season on the practice squad, he returns for another shot at earning a roster spot.

Who's wearing it now: S  Jimmy Hall

Signed as an undrafted free agent out of Northwestern last May, he hopes to earn a spot as a backup safety spot. At 6-1, 228 pounds, Hall is the largest defensive back on the team. As is often the case, if he is to get his foot in the door, it starts with special teams.