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) /
45 of 50
Ray Guy, Oakland Raiders
(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

28. . P. Southern Miss Golden Eagles. Ray Guy. 6. player

If you don’t get the importance of elite special teams play, well, listen up. The Raiders have a proud football history. One area this organization takes great pride in is its level of special teams excellence. Look no further than the greatest and most influential punter of all-time in Ray Guy. Guy was the man, dude.

Oakland liked this guy Guy so much that the Raiders used their first-round pick in the 1973 NFL Draft to take him No. 23 out of Southern Miss. In addition to kicking field goals and punts in college, he was an All-American defensive back for the Golden Eagles in Hattiesburg. While taking him in the first round as a punter was unheard of, Guy changed the game in terms of special teams.

Simply put, Guy won the Raiders games with his booming punts. He helped bring to light the importance of hang time and pinning the opposition inside of its own 20-yard line. Guy made seven Pro Bowls, six All-Pro first teams and helped the Raiders win all three of their Super Bowls to date. Guy retired after the 1986 season at 37 years of age.

He made the NFL’s 75th Anniversary Team and the NFL’s All-Decade Team for the 1970s. After seemingly forever, Guy was finally inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2014. His Canton classmates include Derrick Brooks, Claude Humphrey, Walter Jones, and Andre Reed. Guy has also been elected to the College Football Hall of Fame for his time at Southern Miss. The Ray Guy Award has been given to the best punter in college football annually since 2000.