It has been reported that Marshawn Lynch will wear jersey number 24 during his stint with the Oakland Raiders. Obviously, the jersey has a long and varied history outside of Charles Woodson and hall of famer Willie Brown. “Skittles” Lynch will become the tenth player to ever wear #24 and even though other websites are reporting that Skittles will be the eighth man to don the jersey (they are excluding Bob Keyes and Lance Harkey).
You never have to worry about “Raiders History”, that’s me, ever forgetting or researching all the great men, past and present, who have donned the silver and black of the Raiders. The wearer of silver and black is a special person and Marshawn Lynch will become a special person to me and to Raider Nation forever.
Here is a brief look at the nine men who have worn #24:
- Bob Keyes, running back: Played one year (1960), appeared in four games, rushed 1 time for 7 yards and caught one pass for 13 yards. Sadly, Bob passed away in 1978 at the age of 42.
- Fred Williamson, defensive back: nicknamed “The Hammer” for his hard hits. Fred signed with the Raiders in 1961 as a free agent and he spent the next four seasons in Oakland. During that span he made four straight pro bowls, intercepted 25 passes for 293 yards and one touchdown. His career long was 91 yards, which was a franchise record for a number of seasons.
- Willie Brown, defensive back: At his hall of fame induction, Raiders owner Al Davis called Willie Brown “the finest cornerback of the modern era” and he was right. Willie was acquired in a trade with Denver in 1967 and he spent the next 12 seasons as a Raider. During that span he played in two Super Bowls, 17 playoff games, 154 regular season games and set the Raider franchise mark with 39 career interceptions. Brown also holds the franchise record with three pick sixes in postseason play. All three were taken from the arms of future hall of famers Bob Griese, Fran Tarkenton and Terry Bradshaw.
- Lance Harkey, defensive back: He was an undrafted free agent that was signed by the team to serve as a scab during the 1987 player strike. He appeared in 2 games, returned two punts for 17 yards and 1 kick return for 20 yard.
- Ron Brown, wide receiver/kick returner: Brown was acquired by Al Davis in 1990 from the Los Angeles Rams. Brown played in all 16 regular season games and he appeared in the two playoff games that the Raiders played that season. He returned 30 kickoffs for 575 regular season yards and 4 kickoffs for 77 yards in the postseason.
- Patrick Bates, safety: Drafted to fill the void left by Ronnie Lott’s departure the only label you can attach to Bates is “bust”. Originally he wore jersey #29 in 1993 before switching to #24 for the 1994 season. In total, the former first round pick appeared in 29 games, started nine, and recovered 2 fumbles and one interception.
- Larry Brown, cornerback: Signed as a free agent in 1996, he is regarded as one of the biggest free agent busts in NFL history. He lasted just two seasons In Oakland, played in only 12 of 32 possible games with one lone start. His only recorded defensive statistics is one interception for 4 return yards.
- Charles Woodson, cornerback/safety: The Raiders struck gold when they drafted Woodson in the first round of the 1998 draft. C-Wood’s 11 years in a Raiders uniform do not need to be hashed out here because they are well known and in a few years he will join Willie Brown in Canton, Ohio.
- Michael Huff, safety/cornerback: Appeared in 108 games in Oakland, starting 93 of them. Huff intercepted 11 passes for 75 yards, recorded 3 forced fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries, 361 tackles and 5.5 sacks. As a former first round pick he was not outstanding but he did wear jersey #24 during Woodson’s time in Green Bay.
- Marshawn Lynch, running back: Brought out of retirement for the 2017 season, Lynch signed a two-year deal with his hometown team in the hopes of reviving his career.