With 86 days until the opening game of 2020, we start the count down with the best Raiders player at every jersey number. Today we focus on No. 86.
With the season a few months away, we take a look at the best player to wear the jersey number of the number of days left before the opener on September 13, 2020 against the Carolina Panthers. That game will kick off the new era of Raiders football.
We continue our series with No. 86.
Looking at the history of jersey No. 86, there are a few names that stand out, including Gerald Irons, who was the team’s third round selection back in 1970. After playing as a role player his first two seasons, Irons became a full-time starter for the Raiders across his last four seasons with the team, before landing in Cleveland.
Irons had a nose for the ball, racking up seven interceptions during his time with the team, to go along with two fumble recoveries. Staying with the No. 86, the Raiders made Raghib Ismail a fourth round pick in the 1991 NFL Draft, selecting him to own his rights if he ever decided to leave the CFL and come to the NFL.
Ismail joined the Raiders for the 1993 NFL season, but would go on to play only three years with the team before being traded to Carolina for a fifth round pick. The former Heisman Trophy winner had a few solid seasons in the NFL, posting back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons in 1988 and 1989, but never reached his potential in the Silver and Black.
With that said, let us look at our best No. 86 to wear that jersey number with the Raiders franchise.