One Tasty Cold Dish!

1,000 words--see above

It's official, Raiderdamus weighs the same as a duck (click the link if you don't get the reference). Anyway, Raiderdamus improved to 5-0 and was only off 5 points with a predicted score of 34-23. The Great One shall have a new assistant this week and...it was a tie. Sons predicted 31-27 and then TexasRaider quickly followed with the same. They shall fight to the death this week to see who is worthy of serving under The Master. 

In case they wuss out, TexasRaider email me, 'cause Sons can post his own predictions!

Rated-R, where are you? I miss his awesome post game wrap-ups. Anyway, we need a thread. I am going to re-watch the game and see what things stick out after a more analytical viewing, but for now? Fuck yes! Rejoice! To kick it off, a quick recap of the roller coaster last 3:38 of this game.

The Raiders missed the two point conversion and I was resigned to a solid effort yet a loss on last second field goal. It's happened too many times before. Hell, it happened last year! And last year the Chargers only had 2:30 left on the clock instead of 3:38.

The Raiders were just giving up way too many yards in the air to keep the Chargers out of field goal range. I am not going to lie, it actually floated through my head that they should just let them return the kickoff for a touchdown so they would have time to score again.

The Chargers started off their possession on the 28 and four quick and painful plays later, they had it on the Raiders 40 at the two-minute warning. Things were not looking good. They were already in the field goal window. One play later and they were six yards closer. It felt like I was just hoping against the inevitable.

The Raiders held on the next play and forced a 3rd and 4. They held again! It looked to be a long field goal attempt, until the yellow tissue fell in slow motion horror. PI on CJ, ball at the Raiders 23. "Game over!" I yelled to a room full of people who looked at me like I was crazy for ever thinking anything different.

A funny thing was happening though. The Raiders were blitzing and they were getting pressure. They had to knock 'em out of field goal range. It made sense and they were actually doing it! They were trying to dictate the action and it began to work.

Antonio Gates was called for holding on the next play. "Back to long field goal range!" I was trying not to get my hopes up. It was now 1st and 20 on the Raiders 33. "Keep bringing it," I was shouting, "you got them rattled!"

Hope was creeping back in. More pressure on the next play and another incompletion forced 2nd and 20. I wondered if they'd back off the pressure just to try and throw off the timing. Nope! More pressure and this time Michael Huff made a tackle bigger than any he has missed and knocked the ball out of Rivers hand. I thought it was another incompletion. It looked like his hand was going forward.

Branch picked up the ball and started running. There were no whistles. Branch scored easily and did a dance that contained 6+ years of Raiders frustration. I was getting excited, but something inside kept telling me that was getting called back.

They called for the review. The replays showed the ball out of his hand before it started moving forward, but it was close. There is something about QB fumbles in replays that fill me with a sense of doom. So, even as the ref said, "the play stands as called," I had a hard time believing it.

There was still about a minute of worry left, but the Raiders held and I could finally let go! This victory was sweet!

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