Lester Hayes arrived in Oakland as a fifth-round draft pick in 1977 and became a starter in 1978. By 1980, he was the NFL’s best cornerback with a league-leading 13 interceptions, one short of Hall of Famer Dick “Night Train” Lane’s NFL single-season record.
Anderson wound up passing for more yards (32,838) and more touchdowns (197) than any quarterback in his 1971 draft class. He won four NFL passing titles, two in the 1970s and two more in the 1980s, and was the NFL MVP in 1981 when he took the Bengals to their first Super Bowl.
The best quarterback not in the Hall? A year ago, you might have said it was a Raider, Ken Stabler. But today? You said it was … well, another Raider, Jim Plunkett. One month after Stabler was voted into the Hall voters overwhelmingly supported Plunkett as the next quarterback into Canton over runner-up Ken Anderson.