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Oakland Raiders vs San Diego Chargers 2nd half thread

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Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Finally! The Oakland Raiders have finally allowed Derek Carr to do what he does best, and that is the deep ball. The 3rd play of the first drive for the Raiders showed off that strong arm of Carr with a 77 yard TD to WR Andre Holmes. The pass was on a rope and perfectly placed and then Holmes out ran everybody else to the end zone.

The Chargers offense was unfazed by the long touchdown though. They came out and responded with a 7 play, 80 yard drive of their own to tie the game at 7. Their TD came on a 29 yard pass to Eddie Royal and the whole drive showed exactly why there are a lot of people jumping on the San Diego bandwagon.

The Raiders got a first down on their next drive but they ended up punting. However, the defense was up to the challenge this time and a 3rd down QB sack from C.J. Wilson forced a Chargers punt. T.J. Carrie had a nice return to midfield but it was wasted as the Raiders failed to do anything with the ball. They had another nice deep pass on the drive but it was dropped by Darren McFadden.

This time the Chargers would not be denied points. Their receiver Malcolm Floyd was very tough to defend with a few big catches on the drive including a 20 yard catch with two defenders draped all over him. Floyd capped the drive off with a far too easy, wide open TD catch on 3rd down making the score 14-7 Chargers.

Now it was the Raiders turn to respond and they actually did! They drove the ball down field with a nice mix of Darren McFadden runs and some impressive Derek Carr passes. There was a back shoulder pass to James Jones, a deep ball leaping catch from Andre Holmes, and finished off with a great thread the needle pass over the middle to Jones again for the tying TD. Even more impressive, all three of those throws were on 3rd down plays.

This time the Raiders defense stepped up and played aggressively. They almost sacked Rivers on another 3rd down play but he scrambled for the first. It didn't matter anyway because the next 3rd down was thrown incomplete. T.J. Carrie muffed the punt but managed to recover it on a lucky bounce thankfully.

After that it was very important to use up clock to try and keep the Chargers offense of the field because they are notorious for scoring at the end of the half. That makes the Raiders final drive of the half that much more impressive. They converted several 3rd down plays to use up the rest of the half on their way to a Janikowski field goal attempt. Unfortunately, Jano missed the 53 yard field goal so the score stayed tied at 14.

Tony Sparano's first half as the Raiders coach was an impressive one anyway. The Raiders converted 7 of 10 3rd down plays and kept the high powered Chargers offense somewhat in check. If it wasn't for numerous penalties and 5 dropped passes they almost certainly would have had the lead.