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From West Oakland to Las Vegas: Marcus Peters setting the tone for his childhood team

Wearing No. 24 hits different for Marcus Peters, especially in the Silver and Black.

Peters is the latest All-Pro cornerback to wear the uniform number for the Raiders, a number that was popularized by Hall of Famers Willie Brown and Charles Woodson.

Woodson happens to have been Peters' favorite cornerback growing up, and a huge reason behind him wearing the number. The Oakland, California, native saw first-hand the impact Woodson had on his hometown team and community.

"He used to be out in our Oakland streets," Peters said about Woodson. "And my pops would used to tell me stories about [Woodson] chilling and hanging out, and that's big. It's just a blessing to be able to rock a number he wore. I don't have have too many words for it, but it's a blessing."

It's still surreal for the McClymonds High School alum to be a Raider. After his tenure ended with the Baltimore Ravens, the opportunity to join the Silver and Black was too enticing to pass up.

While speaking to local media for the first time since his signing, the 30-year-old reflected on some memories the franchise brought him as a fan. Some good, and some he'd like to forget.

"The Tuck Rule – killed us man," joked Peters. "Oakland ain't been the same since. But after that, I remember my pops getting in his car and driving to San Diego to go to the Super Bowl [XXXVII against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers]. It's just something that's in me. ... It's a blessing for a little kid from West Oakland to be able to put on this jersey."

"I was always a Raider," he added. "This is something that was in me, since I was a little kid."

Marcus Peters and Charles Woodson after a Raiders-Chiefs game in 2015.
Marcus Peters and Charles Woodson after a Raiders-Chiefs game in 2015.

While Peters playing for the Raiders is a feel-good story, there's more to it than just putting on the iconic uniform. He wants to win football games.

The All-Pro cornerback is a proven ballhawk in this league, with 32 career interceptions. In his eight-year playing career, he's had at least one interception every season, and has already racked up a few in Training Camp practices.

This Silver and Black defense has a focus in creating turnovers as they prepare for the upcoming season. The secondary has been flying to the football and finding every opportunity to get their hands on it when the opportunity presents himself.

"We're hungry. We want to up everything that we are going to do on defense," Peters said. "We want to show our effort. We want our communication to be displayed in our play and then our play is going to be able to show all our effort. We want to have fun doing it, at the same time. I think we're all on the same boat of, let's just come to work, keep building our camaraderie together and then be ready to put a product on the field that's Raiders.

When asked about Peters last month, superstar edge rusher Maxx Crosby said he believes the cornerback is the type of player the defense will immediately feel the presence of.

"He's an alpha. I love Marcus," said Crosby. "I've known him since my rookie year, we've got the same agent. Marcus is my guy. ... I love Marcus, he brings that attitude that we need in the secondary, and I can't wait to see him get out there and keep competing because he's a dog for sure."

As a vet, Peters knows he wants to pay it forward to his new teammates. He credited Eric Berry, Justin Houston and Aqib Talib as a few of his teammates with the Kansas City Chiefs that showed him the way as a young player. Now, he's tasked with being a shining example for a young, talented secondary in Las Vegas.

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View photos of fans enjoying the second week of the Silver and Black's 2023 Training Camp.

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