One of the NFL’s most versatile players, Blanda was an ironman who gained fame for his prolific scoring numbers as well as his late-game heroics during a memorable five-game stretch in 1970. Blanda finished his career with a then-NFL record 2,002 combined points and held 21 title game and 16 regular-season records. In 1967, at age 39, the Raiders added Blanda as an all-purpose passer-kicker and he performed at a high level for nine more NFL seasons and was the 1970 AFC player of the year. He played 26 NFL seasons and appeared in 340 games.
The late Raiders icon was the first true guard to enter the Hall of Fame. The No. 1 draft pick in 1967, Upshaw earned the starting left guard spot immediately, played in 307 games and established himself as an exceptional run blocker, particularly on sweeps. Upshaw, who played in 10 AFL/AFC title games, three Super Bowls and seven Pro Bowls, was selected All-NFL seven times. He also served as the executive director of the NFL Players Association before his death in 2008, at age 63.
Quick and powerful, Long, a member of the NFL’s All-Decade team of the 1980s, recorded 84 career sacks – not including the 7.5 he posted in his rookie season in 1981, before the sack became an official statistic. Long was only the second Raiders defensive lineman to earn a Pro Bowl berth, and was a first- or second-team All-Pro from 1983-86 as well as in 1989. In 1985 Long posted 10 sacks, including a string of eight games with at least one sack. Despite missing much of the 1988 season due to injury, Long still had three sacks and intercepted the first pass of his career, which he returned 73 yards in a game against the Houston Oilers. Long is currently an analyst and co-host of FOX NFL Sunday.
The first player in NFL history to rush for over 10,000 yards and post more than 5,000 receiving yards, Allen’s pro career began as the NFL’s Rookie of the Year and ended with him finishing as the game’s all-time rushing touchdown leader. In 1985, Allen led the league with 1,759 rushing yards and 11 TDs; he also caught 67 passes for 55 yards for three more TDs and was named the NFL’s MVP. In 16 seasons, Allen gained 12,243 yards rushing, 5,411 yards receiving and scored 145 touchdowns.
Blessed with great hands and slippery moves, “Freddy B” caught 589 passes for 8,974 yards and 76 touchdowns during his 14-year career with the Raiders from 1965 through 1978. He was the NFL’s all-time receiver at the time of his retirement. His 70 receptions, 1,167 yards receiving and 10 touchdowns in 19 postseason games were also NFL career records. In Super Bowl XI, Biletnikoff caught four passes for 79 yards to set up three Oakland scores in the Raiders’ 32-14 victory and was named the game’s MVP.