Part III: Top 3 Wide Receivers during Raiders’ “Dark Age”

Once again we take a look back at some of the brighter spots during what I’ve deemed the “Dark Age” in Oakland Raiders football and this time it’s the Raider’s wide receivers.

Putting this list together was somewhat tricky as there were some wideouts whose stats were very close and it became hard to decide where to place them. One thing was sure as I combed over each receiver’s stats is that the Raiders have done a lot to improve that position to present day. Not even the top receiver on this list comes close to Cooper or Crabtree. So without further delay let’s get this list underway.

First off, an “honorable mention” goes to Randy Moss as he was the only receiver during this time to eclipse 1,000 yards in a single season. I felt like this list wouldn’t have been complete without at least a mention of Moss and for fear of Raider fans raining down their wrath on me. Statistically speaking, Moss totaled 1,558 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns in his two-year stint with the Raiders.

3. Ronald Curry 2002-2008

Because I’m only covering the period of 2003-2013, I will leave out Curry’s 2002 stats. The Oakland Raiders drafted Curry in 2002; he was a 7th round selection. Curry was a highly decorated quarterback at the college of North Carolina before the Raiders switched him to a receiver in the NFL. Curry’s career with the Raiders had bright spots yet thanks to a torn Achilles tendon that plagued him from 2004-2005 then again in 2008; it was ruined.

Like many during this time Curry had to constantly adjust to new players under center, playing with nine different quarterbacks.

Ronald Curry’s Stats:

Curry amassed 2,347 receiving yards but a mere 13 touchdowns through these six seasons. He also averaged 12.2 yards per reception.

2. Denarius Moore 2011-2014

Once again I’ll be leaving out Moore’s 2014 stats for the sake of the term. Moore was drafted by the Raiders in 2011 in the 5th round. The Tennessee product started his career off hot with Oakland but then never seemed to reach that next level. Moore was good but not great. He would have been excellent in the slot, in my opinion. However, the lack of talent in Oakland’s receiving corps forced Moore into a top role he could never live up to. Throughout the three seasons that are mentioned here, Moore had some of the most “consistent” numbers of Raider receivers which helped him land at number two on this list.

Denarius Moore’s Stats:

Moore racked up 2,054 yards in the three seasons mentioned here but hauled in an impressive 17 touchdowns. Also impressive were Moore’s average yards per reception which were 16.1.

1. Jerry Porter 2000-2007

Jerry Porter was also a victim of Oakland’s revolving door at the quarterback position playing with nine different quarterbacks. Porter, drafted in the second round of the 2000 NFL draft by the Raiders. The West Virginia product was a regular “swiss army knife” for the Mountaineers playing free safety, receiver, and even quarterback at one point. Porter was the only receiver (besides Moss) who came close to breaking the 1,000 mark in 2004 reaching 998 receiving yards.

Jerry Porter’s Stats:

During this timeline, Porter caught 3,025 receiving yards and piled up 21 touchdowns. Porter also averaged 15.2 yards per reception which was quite impressive.

Final Thoughts

Denarius Moore’s consistent play was enough to put him higher on this list than Curry even though Curry had more receiving yards. I had forgotten about Porter’s suspension in 2006 which stemmed from his bickering with then head coach Art Shell. I always wonder what these receivers could have done with the young star the Raiders now have under center. Either way, real fans can appreciate how far the Raiders have come from those days and enjoy even more the present day success.

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