Las Vegas Raiders: 15 best first-round picks all-time
By John Buhler
When a team has been around as long as the Las Vegas Raiders have, there are bound to be some great picks atop the draft. Here are the 15 best first-rounders.
The quickest way to success on the football field is having success in the war room. While not every draft pick pans out, it is immensely important to hit on first-round guys because of the money they’ll command from that high of a draft selection.
Fortunately for a storied franchise like the Las Vegas Raiders, the team has hit on a bunch of great players at the top of the draft. Are there whiffs along the way? Absolutely, as every NFL franchise has at least a few massive busts with a former first-round pick. Even a guy with all the talent in the world may not have the work ethic or be mentally prepared to compete at a high level professionally.
While general manager Reggie McKenzie continues to make great moves in free agency of late, let’s take a look back on the 15 best first-round picks in franchise history. This list will certainly change over time, as a few players on this list are just getting started in their promising NFL careers with the Silver and Black.
Best first-round draft picks in Raiders history: 15. Harry Schuh
Back in the 1965 AFL Draft, the Raiders selected a two-time All-American tackle out of Memphis in the form of Harry Schuh. Schuh starred at what was then Memphis State and remains one of the best players to have ever played his college ball for the Tigers. With the accolades he had coming out of college, it wasn’t shocking to see the Raiders take him at No. 3 overall in the AFL Draft.
Schuh would play his first six professional seasons with the Silver and Black from 1965 to 1970. He would play in 88 games at right tackle for the Raiders, starting in 55 contests in his six-year stint in Oakland.
Schuh would be a part of the 1967 AFL Championship team that would lose to the Green Bay Packers in what is now known as Super Bowl II. His best seasons in football came in his last four years in Oakland. Schuh would make the AFL All-Star team in 1967 and 1969, as well as his lone trip to the Pro Bowl in 1970.
He earned All-Pro honors with the club in 1969. During that four-year run from 1967 to 1970, Schuh was without doubt one of the best offensive tackles in football. He would play his next four NFL seasons with the Los Angeles Rams (1971-73) and the Packers (1974) before retiring. Schuh is part of the Raiders’ All-Time Team. He passed away in September 2013 in Memphis.