Raiders: Ranking the top 5 defensive linemen in franchise history

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Raiders (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images) /
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2. Greg Townsend, DE, Raiders

No Raiders defensive lineman had a statistical career like Greg Townsend.

The iconic pass rusher played 12 of his 13 NFL seasons with the Raiders., finishing first in team history with an incredible 107.5 sacks. He was a key part of the team’s Super Bowl XVIII Championship team and was also a two-time Pro-Bowler and two-time NFL All-Pro.

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While Townsend was not able to compile as many personal awards as one would assume a player with his resume would have been honored with, he is a legend in the mind of Raiders and NFL fans alike.

Only one man is capable of knocking him out of the top spot.

1. Howie Long, DE, Raiders

Howie Long may be the player most synonymous with the Raiders’ franchise. The NFL Hall-of-Famer spent his entire 13-year career wearing silver and black.

During that time, he amassed 84 sacks (second on the all-time team list) and played 179 games for the team (13th all-time and first among defensive players).

He, like Townsend, was a part of the 1983 Super Bowl championship team. He also collected a whopping eight Pro Bowl selections, five total All-Pro teams, was named the NFL Defensive Lineman of the Year in 1985, and was selected as a member of the NFL 1980’s All-Decade team.

Next. Raiders: Ranking the top 5 defensive backs in franchise history. dark

While he is known by younger fans for his work as an NFL analyst, make no mistake about it. Howie Long was a phenomenal pass rusher and historic athlete as a member of the Raiders defensive line.

What changes would you make to this top five list?