Punishing players have worn the No. 53 with the Raiders
Rod Martin (1977-1988)
Considered a tweener by scouts coming out of USC, Rod Martin was a 12th round selection of the Oakland Raiders in the 1977 NFL Draft. Being a 12th rounder did nothing to ruin his confidence, as he enjoyed a 12-year run in the Silver and Black, and in the process, became a key defensive player on two Super Bowl winning teams.
Starting out as a middle linebacker, and then moving to the weak side, Martin established himself as one of the premier linebackers in the game. A two-time Pro Bowler in 1983 and 1984, Martin was also an All-Pro during that 1984 season, and would go on to play four more seasons with the team.
Not only was Martin key in the Raiders getting to the Super Bowl, but he played his best football under the bright lights, coming up big in both Super Bowl XV and Super Bowl XVIII. Against the Philadelphia Eagles, Martin had a Super Bowl-record three interceptions, though he lost out to Jim Plunkett in terms of the MVP.
Three years later against the Washington Redskins, Martin was all over the field once again, stopping drives, and helping the team to their second ring of the decade. In total, Martin appeared in 165 games in the Silver and Black, starting 147, and when it comes to all-time linebackers in team history, the list cannot be drawn up without his name.