Last time we wrapped up the offense, so in this article we are shifting gears and taking a look at the post 2000s All-Raiders Defense. This article specifically looks at the defensive line. Of course there is a lot of ambiguity when it comes to determining this, so if you disagree or would swap one player out for another, feel free to comment your opinion! Let’s take a stroll down memory lane and get the conversation going.
Reminder: this is exclusively for what players did as Raiders from 2000 to 2019. Thus, there may be players who had a great career but aren’t on this list because the end of their careers or tenure with the Raiders was in the early 2000s.
Defensive End: Khalil Mack
You could make the argument that Mack is Oakland’s best draft pick of the 2000s. The former Raider made the Pro Bowl three times, was an All-Pro twice and was the first player to be named an All-Pro at two positions in the same year. In the 2000s, Mack has more sacks than any other Raider and leads the organization with 68 tackles for loss.
Defensive End: Derrick Burgess
Burgess ranks seventh all time with 38.5 career sacks and managed to make two Pro Bowls for Oakland. In four seasons with the Silver and Black, the defensive end had eight or more sacks three times. In 2005, Burgess even led the NFL with 16 sacks. The pass rusher was one of the few bright spots during the mid 2000s.
Defensive Tackle: Tommy Kelly
The former undrafted free agent tallied 34.5 sacks, the third most sacks of any Raider in the 2000s. Even more impressive, Kelly ranks second all time with 45 tackles for loss. These are the two most important statistics for defensive linemen and Kelly was clearly one of the more productive linemen in the last two decades.
Defensive Tackle: Rod Coleman
While never recognized as a Pro Bowler or All-Pro, Coleman was productive in the 2000s with 28.5 sacks (ranks fourth in the 2000s) and 40 tackles for loss (ranks fourth all time). While there are certainly bigger names to choose from, for example, Warren Sapp, those names didn’t have the productivity Coleman had for the organization.
Defensive lineman: Richard Seymour
Seymour’s tenure in the Silver and Black only lasted about three and half years, but resulted in two Pro Bowl appearances. Had the defensive lineman’s tenure with the franchise been longer, he may have moved up this list.
Defensive tackle: Warren Sapp
The former Buccaneer came to Oakland at the end of his career and his play was up and down. Sapp did manage to accumulate 10 sacks in 2006 and five in 2007. The Hall of Famer deserves mention, but was ultimately out produced by Rod Coleman as a Raider.
Defensive End: Lamarr Houston
The former second round pick ranks seventh all time for the Raiders with 37 tackles for loss. While he never emerged as top tier player, Houston was a solid contributor for Oakland.
Be sure to comment below with any players you feel should be included!
Related: All Raiders Offensive Line of the 2000s