Las Vegas Raiders: 50 greatest players in franchise history

A video board displays an Al Davis quote (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
A video board displays an Al Davis quote (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) /
25 of 50
Oakland Raiders
(Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images) /

. WR. San Jose State Spartans. Art Powell. 26. player. 28

After playing in the CFL for the Montreal Alouettes and the Toronto Argonauts, wide receiver Art Powell would make his way into the United States professional football landscape in 1959 with the Philadelphia Eagles. Powell would spend three years with the then New York Titans in the AFL before joining up with the Raiders in 1963.

While in Oakland, Powell would be an AFL All-Star all four years he was with the Raiders from 1963 to 1966. Twice he would be named AFL All-League. The first came with New York in 1960. His other All-League nod would come with the Raiders in 1963 when he had 73 catches for 1,304 yards and 16 touchdowns. Powell would lead the AFL in receiving yards, touchdowns, and yards per game (93.1) that season.

Five times in his AFL/NFL career would Powell be over 1,000 yards receiving in a season. He would also have five seasons in which he had over 10 touchdowns. Before any of us really knew what was going on, Powell was proving that there is great value in the receiving game at split end/slot receiver. He was a pioneer in the modern passing game in some way.

Powell would retire from football after the 1968 NFL season when he was a member of the Minnesota Vikings. Though not enshrined in Canton, Powell made the AFL All-Time Team. In his 10 professional seasons in the States, Powell had 479 receptions for 8,046 yards and 81 receiving touchdowns. Maybe he will one day earn posthumous Canton enshrinement given the era in which he played?