Raiders receiving legend Branch dies at 71

07 Août, 2019, 19:08 | Auteur: Adelaide Bullion
  • Getty									Former Raiders WR Cliff Branch

As Gruden said, a handful of players and coaches - ranging from Derek Carr to Tyrell Williams and Lamarcus Joyner - all took to the practice field Sunday wearing No. 21 jerseys to pay homage to Branch, a move, that per the head coach, was their idea.

Cliff Branch died unexpectedly on Saturday night, leaving the Raiders organization shocked and in mourning.

Raiders owner Mark Davis considered himself to be Branch's "best friend", and once served as the wide receiver's agent while his father, the late Al Davis, owned the team. "His loss leaves an eternal void for the Raiders Family, but his kindness and loving nature will be fondly remembered forever", the team said. "I will miss him dearly", from the team's account.

Branch, who was selected by the Raiders out of Colorado in the fourth round of the 1972 NFL Draft, saw limited action his first two seasons but burst on the scene in 1974 when he caught 60 passes to lead the NFL in receiving yards (1,092) and touchdowns (13).

His career totals in receptions, receiving yards and touchdown catches place him third in franchise history, trailing only Hall of Famers Tim Brown and Biletnikoff in each category.

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Branch finished his career with 501 catches for 8,685 yards and 68 touchdowns.

Branch played on all three Raiders teams that won the Super Bowl, following the 1976, 1980 and 1983 seasons. Branch also had a league-high 1,092 yards receiving in 1974.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame announced this week that it will induct a 2020 "Centennial Class" with 20 individuals to be enshrined.

He's certainly deserving, with three Super Bowl championships, three All-Pro selections and four Super Bowls.

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