Oakland Raiders: 15 best free agent acquisitions of all-time

Rich Gannon, Oakland Raiders. (Photo By Eliot J. Schechter/Getty Images)
Rich Gannon, Oakland Raiders. (Photo By Eliot J. Schechter/Getty Images) /
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Justin Tuck, Oakland Raiders
Justin Tuck, Oakland Raiders. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images) /

(2014-15). Justin Tuck. 15. player. 28. . DE

First and foremost, Justin Tuck may not be the most talented player on this list, but his impact on the Raiders was tremendous. After spending the first nine years of his career with the New York Giants, Tuck joined the Raiders in 2014 after signing a two-year, $11 million contract. The hope was that the veteran defensive end would bolster the defensive line and give the Raiders a consistent presence off the edge.

So it turned out, the Raiders ended up selecting Khalil Mack with their fifth overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, a month after they signed Tuck. Oakland also drafted Justin Ellis and had young linebackers in Sio Moore and Ray-Ray Armstrong.

All four of the those players benefited heavily from having Tuck on the team. He was able to teach them the little things, like how to stay focused and how to deal with the daily toll the NFL has on its players.

Clearly, this two-year deal came at the tail end of Tuck’s career, but Tuck still had a decent run with Oakland. In 2014, he tallied five sacks and two forced fumbles with 43 tackles to boot.

Unfortunately, he missed 11 games in 2015 due to injury and only recorded one sack. Tuck retired shortly after the 2015 season.

The best way to sum up how Tuck helped the Raiders was in a Thursday night game against the Kansas City Chiefs. After what was essentially a game-winning sack by Sio Moore, Moore and Mack were celebrating in the backfield while the Chiefs were about to hike the ball, resulting in an offside penalty.

Tuck was there to call timeout and save the Raiders from collapsing, resulting in the first win in Derek Carr’s career. He may not have had incredible sack totals, but Tuck was a huge reason behind the culture shift in Oakland from 2014 to 2015.