When Elway was drafted by the Baltimore Colts in 1983, he made it very clear that he would not sign with them. And the Raiders pushed very, very hard to acquire the Stanford QB when teams were calling the Colts about a trade.
The Raiders were looking to acquire the Bears’ No. 6 overall pick in a trade to send to Baltimore as part of a package for Elway—they were reportedly going to trade Howie Long to Chicago to get the pick. According to Elway’s agent, he was told that there was a deal in place for Oakland to get the 6th pick.
The trade never materialized and thus Elway never became a Raider. But this wasn’t the last time the Raiders narrowly missed out on a Hall of Fame quarterback.