We were all hoping for a rejuvenated Raiders unit starting out this game but that's not what happened. The Raiders had the ball first and did not even gain a yard. The Rams went right through the Raiders defense with their first time with the ball and scored a TD on a 35 yard pass to RB Tre Mason. Very quickly it was already 7-0 Rams.
Oakland followed up their first three and out possession with a second one. The punt was muffed and despite there being a pile full of Raiders players there the ball bounced right back to a Rams player for the recovery. St Louis then proceeded to pass their way right through the Raiders defense again. A long pass play to Steadman Bailey got the Rams to inside the Raiders 10 yard line, the 9th offensive play for the Rams with all 9 being passes. They followed that up with 2 runs including the TD on a QB bootleg run by Shaun Hill to make the score 14-0 St Louis with still 7 minutes to go in the 1st quarter.
George Atkinson III muffed the kickoff after the 2nd Rams TD but luckily managed to recover it, it was just more sloppy play from the Raiders though. They then went three and out for the 3rd straight time to open this game. Derek Carr tried to force the ball to an obviously not open James Jones on this 3rd down, he never even looked anywhere else. This game could not have started any worse for Oakland.
The Rams continued their tare by doing exactly what they had done previously, throw quick to Steadman Bailey. He had 5 catches for 100 yards already in the first quarter which is a new career high for the receiver in any game. This time the TD came on a run by WR Tavon Austin who ran right past an unblocked Justin Tuck who got burned badly by Austin's speed. The 1st quarter isn't even done yet and it's 21-0 Rams, St Louis' biggest lead in any game all season.
The kickoff again was a terrible play by GA3, he took the ball out from deep in the endzone and was tackled well before the 20. The Raiders did finally get their first 1st down of the game on this drive. In fact, thanks to a defensive holding penalty they even got two of them! Actually, that defensive holding penalty on 3rd down seemed to finally awaken the Raiders offense as they finally found a little room to make some plays.
They ended up stalling anyway though, thanks to a false start penalty on a 4th and 1 play where the Raiders were going to go for it. After that penalty they decided to punt the ball instead of go for it or to try what would have been around a 58 yard field goal. They have the kicker with the strongest leg in NFL history, playing in a dome, down 21-0 and they punted. Ugh! These type of decisions make me wish I could turn the game off altogether but of course I can't.
The Rams response to that punt you wonder? Just an 89 yard touchdown run by Tre Mason, that's all. He broke through the Raiders defense easily and just took off with lightning speed similar to Latavius Murray's TD run last week against the Chiefs. It makes the decision to punt previously that much more infuriating and the score after that was 28-0 Rams. 28-0!!
The Raiders next drive, believe it or not, was the worst of all the Raiders drives. They had a false start ruin what seemed like a play that could go a long way, a dropped screen pass that could have gone a long way, and a block in the back on a play that came just short of the first down. Inexplicably the Rams accepted the block in the back penalty instead of letting the Raiders punt on 4th and one, because apparently Jeff Fisher is a psychic.
Instead they replayed 3rd down and Carr almost got sacked, but instead threw a ball over the middle way too high that was intercepted. To make matters worse, Menelik Watson got hurt trying to tackle the Rams player who intercepted the ball. It literally added injury to insult and the Rams got the ball back deep into Raiders territory.
The Raiders seemed to make a stop finally, but instead there was a defensive holding call on the 3rd down stop by the Raiders. The very next play was yet another TD by the Rams to make the score 35-0 with more than 8 minutes still to go in the 1st half. This is the worst game of the Raiders season by far, and that is saying something considering this was an 0-10 team to start the season.
Pretty much whatever bad could happen is happening for the Raiders. It was going to be another three and out anyway for the Raiders but the receiver ran right into a defender stopping his route. Carr threw the ball already at that point, to a receiver that was double covered and short of the first down, and it went right into a Rams players awaiting arms for the 2nd interception of the game.
Luckily the Raiders finally didn't give up a TD despite the Rams starting this drive just outside the Raiders 10 yard line. The defense actually came up with a play shockingly, this by Justin Tuck sacking Shaun Hill on 3rd down to force a field goal. The field goal made the score 38-0 with just over 5 minutes to go in the half. To make sure that Raiders fans don't enjoy anything in this game, the TV crew immediately showed Menelik Watson walking as gingerly as you will ever see to the locker room. Maybe use a damn cart Raiders!
The next kickoff was a returnable kick but George Atkinson III again fumbled the ball. He recovered it but was trampled at the Raiders own 4 yard line. Derek Carr managed to get a first down on a 19 yard pass to Kenbrell Thompkins to give the Raiders some breathing room. He followed that up with another first down to Andre Holmes, and then another first down to Mychal Rivera. That's as far as they got though, another punt by Marquette King.
The Rams mercifully ran out the remaining clock of the half. This was one of the worst halves of football in Raiders history, and no that is not an exaggeration. It's 38-0 at the half in favor of the Rams, and it actually could have been worse.