Last year the NFLPA began putting out their ‘Rising 50’ which is a list of who they deem to be the future top selling NFL stars. This year’s list is devoid of Silver & Black.
The list is put together to identify players the NFLPA deems best positioned to rank among top-sellers of all officially licensed merchandise and become future retail stars.
Here is the entire list:
- Todd Gurley, RB, Los Angeles Rams
- Kirk Cousins, QB, Washington Redskins
- Thomas Rawls, RB, Seattle Seahawks
- Jared Goff, QB, Los Angeles Rams
- Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Dallas Cowboys
- Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals
- DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Houston Texans
- Josh Norman, DB, Washington Redskins
- Allen Robinson, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars
- Carson Wentz, QB, Philadelphia Eagles
- David Johnson, RB, Arizona Cardinals
- Keenan Allen, WR, San Diego Chargers
- Devonta Freeman, RB, Atlanta Falcons
- Tyrann Mathieu, DB, Arizona Cardinals
- Jeremy Langford, RB, Chicago Bears
- Tyrod Taylor, QB, Buffalo Bills
- Paxton Lynch, QB, Denver Broncos
- Doug Baldwin, WR, Seattle Seahawks
- Tyler Lockett, WR/KR, Seattle Seahawks
- Aaron Donald, DL, Los Angeles Rams
- Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Carolina Panthers
- Randall Cobb, WR, Green Bay Packers
- Lamar Miller, RB, Houston Texans
- Jordan Reed, TE, Washington Redskins
- Brock Osweiler, QB, Houston Texans
- T.Y. Hilton, WR, Indianapolis Colts
- Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Gary Barnidge, TE, Cleveland Browns
- Patrick Peterson, DB, Arizona Cardinals
- Joey Bosa, DE, San Diego Chargers
- Eric Decker, WR, New York Jets
- Jarvis Landry, WR, Miami Dolphins
- Stefon Diggs, WR, Minnesota Vikings
- Buck Allen, RB, Baltimore Ravens
- Matt Jones, RB, Washington Redskins
- Josh Doctson, WR, Washington Redskins
- Doug Martin, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Corey Coleman, WR, Cleveland Browns
- Tyler Eifert, TE, Cincinnati Bengals
- Zach Ertz, TE, Philadelphia Eagles
- Tavon Austin, WR/KR, Los Angeles Rams
- Ameer Abdullah, RB, Detroit Lions
- Allen Hurns, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars
- Brandin Cooks, WR, New Orleans Saints
- Laquon Treadwell, WR, Minnesota Vikings
- Malcolm Butler, CB, New England Patriots
- Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans
- Myles Jack, LB, Jacksonville Jaguars
- DeVante Parker, WR, Miami Dolphins
- Blaine Gabbert, QB, San Francisco 49ers
The first reaction to the Raiders not being on this list for most fans would be something like a conspiracy. But there is actually a logical explanation.
This list is about marketability and if you look back at who was invited to the Rookie Premiere, you’ll see the NFL simple doesn’t consider defensive players to be very marketable and therefore are not well represented. This list has a grand total of 7 defensive players. All others are offensive skill position players.
Last year’s list had Raiders young stars Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper on it and once a player is on the list, they can’t be put on the list again the following year.
Outside of Cooper, none of the Raiders top drafted players the past two years are offensive skill position players. Neither are any of the teams top free agent additions this offseason.
That’s why despite six teams featuring as many as three players on the list (Arizona Cardinals, Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars, Los Angeles Rams, Seattle Seahawks, and Washington), the Raiders have none.