Through The Decades: 5 Underrated Raiders Players From The 2010s

After a long seven years straight of losing records, the Las Vegas (technically, Oakland) Raiders would enter the 2010’s eager and determined to get back in the win column as they would finally reach .500, finishing 8-8 in 2010 and 2011. The Raiders, however, would only see one playoff appearance, which came in 2016. That came after the team finished 12-4, which was their best record since 2000. Throughout the decade, the team would alternate between winning and losing, but the 2010s would see the most talent the team had seen in years.

Who are the most underrated Raiders players from this decade?

Jacoby Ford

Jacoby Ford would find his way to the Raiders in 2010 and would explode onto the scene as a return specialist. In his first year with the team, Ford would start nine games in which he would catch 25 passes for 470 yards and two touchdowns. Ford did not only produce through the air on offense, but he would produce in the run game as well. He rushed for 155 yards on 10 attempts with two touchdowns. Ford found the majority of his success with the Raiders as an electric kick returner. He would return 53 kicks for 1,280 yards and three touchdowns, with his longest return being 101 yards in his first season. Ford would leave the team in 2013 after a disappointing campaign that year.

Michael Bush

Through the 2010s, Darren McFadden would carry the running game. However, with his injuries and ups and downs, the Raiders would look to Michael Bush for production in the running game. Bush would see the field mostly as a backup throughout his time with the team. Nevertheless, he had three starts in 2010. Bush would rush the ball 158 times for 655 yards and eight touchdowns. He would have his breakout season (and his final one) with the Raiders in 2011, when he carried the ball 256 times for 977 yards and seven touchdowns, and also caught 37 passes for 418 yards and a touchdown. Bush would finish his four-year stint with the Raiders by totaling 632 rushing attempts for 2,642 yards and 21 touchdowns.

Denarius Moore

It’s no secret that the Raiders had trouble with the quarterback position for much of that decade. Be that as it may, the team saw a lot of underrated talent at wide receiver. One of those players was Denarius Moore.

Moore would be a spark for the team and would be a deep threat throughout his Raider career. For example, in 2012, he would be targeted 114 times with a low reception number of 51, but he would also provide 741 yards off those receptions with seven touchdowns. Moore would have another good outing for the team the next year, catching 46 passes out of 86 targets for 695 yards and five touchdowns. It would be Moore’s last good year with the team, as he would leave after the 2014 season.

Lamarr Houston

The Raiders found potential on the defensive line in 2010 when they brought in Lamarr Houston. He would provide some well-needed pressure. In his first season with the team, Houston would start 15 games and force one fumble, have five sacks, eight tackles for loss, and 14 QB hits.

While Houston continuously developed, his best season was in 2013. Houston would haunt offenses as he would force two fumbles and recover one, totaling six sacks with 16 QB hits. Houston would finish his Raiders career after the 2013 season. By then, he had a total of 16.5 sacks, 171 solo tackles, 37 tackles for loss, and 47 QB hits.

Bruce Irvin

The 2016 season would be the season that the Raiders would finally return to the playoffs after finishing 12-4. They had a solid defense and talent on the D-line, which included a stud at the edge rusher position in Bruce Irvin. In his first season with the team in 2016, Irvin would torch opposing quarterbacks and offensive linemen as he would force six fumbles, collect seven sacks with 25 QB hits, and make nine tackles for loss. Irvin would continue his dominance on the defensive line the following year, forcing four fumbles, racking up eight sacks, 12 QB hits, and 14 tackles. However, that turned out to be his final full season with the Raiders before being traded midseason in 2018.

Which Raiders are worthy of an honorable mention?

Darrius Heyward-Bey

Darrius Heyward-Bey was drafted by the team in 2009 with the seventh overall pick. In his first season with the team, Bey would develop and learn until he was ready to be incorporated into the rotation more. The best thing that Bey had going for him was his remarkable speed. Unfortunately, he was never a polished receiver or route-runner. You also have to factor in the team’s quarterback situation as well. Nevertheless, Bey got an opportunity to have a bigger role. He started 14 games in 2010 and 2011.

During that 2011 campaign, Bey had his best individual season. He hauled in 64 catches on 115 targets for 975 yards and four touchdowns. However, you could argue he’d peaked after that. The following year (2012), Bey managed 41 catches for 606 yards and five touchdowns. He was gone by the following season.

David Amerson

David Amerson would be traded to the Raiders two games into the 2015 season and would have an immediate impact on the defense. In his first fourteen games, Amerson had four interceptions and one touchdown, and he would have 25 pass deflections. In 2016, Amerson would continue to show improvement. Fans saw him start 15 games, record two interceptions, and have 16 pass deflections with 56 solo tackles. Amerson would stay with the team for one more season, but he would only play in six games before leaving.

*Top Photo: Bleacher Report

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I enjoy reading your articles. Good job!!!

edward Abram

The Raiders had just lost a SB to its’ HC coach/ assistant GM( ’03). Then suddenly, they go into a nine year slump. Well, sometimes that happens- its’ nothing new but then it stopped making sense. Good teams sometimes slump after going to playoffs a lot or a SB trip but not nine years. But there were some strange things you had the media claiming Al was ruining the team with overpaid athletes, that there was dysfunction and unhappy players there and that Gannon and Gruden leaving was reason for the slump(’03). I thought the Raiders had a talented roster… Read more »

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