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News

100 Days of 100 Jersey Numbers - 72

Posted Mar 27, 2014

Nine players have worn jersey No. 72 in Raiders history, including one of the most colorful characters to ever suit up in an NFL uniform.

For a total of 100 days, we'll take a look at the men who have played for the Raiders jersey number by jersey number. This series will highlight some of the greatest players in NFL history. In some cases, the player and jersey number are synonymous. In other cases, the jersey number represents sustained greatness at a particular position. Some players are superstitious about their jersey number. Whatever the case may be, jersey numbers are an important part of the fabric of professional football.


John Matuszak chases down Eagles QB Ron Jaworski in Super Bowl XV. AP Photo.

Nine players have worn jersey No. 72 in Raiders history, including one of the most colorful characters to ever suit up in an NFL uniform.

Dalton Truax – DT – 1960

Originally drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the 3rd round of 1957 NFL Draft, Truax played in 14 games in 1960.

Hal Smith – DT – 1961

Smith joined the Raiders after splitting time between the Broncos and Patriots in 1960. He played in eight games for the Raiders.

Jim Norris – DT – 1962-64

Selected by the Raiders in the 7th round of the 1962 AFL Draft out of the University of Houston, Norris played in 22 games.

John Matuszak – DE/DT – 1976-82

“The Tooz” joined the Raiders after a year with the Houston Oilers and two with the Kansas City Chiefs. He played in 87 regular season games with 72 starts and recovered four fumbles. He was a key member of the two Raiders Super Bowl teams. Matuszak starred as Sloth in The Goonies in 1985 and as Tonda in Caveman in 1981 opposite Ringo Starr. In all, he made 33 appearances in films and TV shows before his death in 1989.

Don Mosebar – C/G/T – 1983-94

The Raiders selected Mosebar in the 1st round of the 1983 NFL Draft out of USC. He succeeded Jim Otto and Dave Dalby and became the next great Raiders center. He played in 173 games with 156 starts and was selected to the Pro Bowl three times. 

Lincoln Kennedy – T – 1996-03

The Raiders acquired Kennedy in a trade with the Atlanta Falcons in 1996. After three years in Atlanta, Kennedy played in 121 games with 119 starts in eight years with the Raiders. He was selected for three Pro Bowls and named 1st Team All-Pro once.

Erik Pears – G/T – 2009

Pears joined the Raiders after two years in Denver. He played in 12 games with four starts. He has played for Buffalo since 2010.

Joe Barksdale – T – 2011

The Raiders selected Barksdale in the 3rd round of the 2011 NFL Draft. He saw action in 13 games. He has since gone on to play for the St. Louis Rams.

Jack Cornell – G/T – 2013-present

Cornell, who played college football at Illinois, was active for two games in 2013. He spent a good part of the season on the practice squad.

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