Remember when Ricky Williams was almost a Raider?
Well, sort of, but then again you might not recall the All-Pro running back insisting he’d join Oakland in 2005 just after retiring from the Miami Dolphins.
New details emerged from that flirtation in the story “Ricky Williams Takes The High Road” featured in the Sports Illustrated that hit newstands Monday.
Williams decided to change his name to Rio Don and play for the Raiders, even signing some footballs for his agent to that effect. That revelation came after he watched the Raiders beat the Buccaneers while in a Thai airport, inspiring him to return to the NFL.
At the time the San Diego native told “the only way I would” consider coming back was with Oakland — because “I love Cali.” Surely the presence of Al Davis and the Raiders image influenced him as well.
However, as he told SI’s Greg Bishop recently, “Luckily, that idea didn’t stick.”
Luckily for him, perhaps, but the Raiders could have used the former Heisman winner, who would later gain 1,121 yards with the Dolphins in 2009.