With Derek Carr lining up in the shotgun, he drew the Bills offsides on third and five to pick up the team’s first first down on their opening drive. The next play, he hit Amari Cooper for a 52-yard gain, but it was called back due to an illegal formation penalty due to Austin Howard not on the line of scrimmage and the Raiders would punt.
With the Bills opening drive, they flipped the script and passed the ball. The league best rushing attack drove into first and goal before running the ball for the first time. That run went for three yards and the Raiders would keep the Bills out of the end zone, forcing them to settle for a field goal and a 3-0 lead early.
A 22-yard run by Latavius Murray around the left edge got the Raiders next drive started. A 26-yard catch by Mychal Rivera put them in scoring position and Sebastian Janikowski added a 47-yard field goal to tie the game at 3-3.
To finish out the first quarter, the Bills went on another long drive. This time the running game played a large role, including a 29-yard run by Mike Gillislee up the middle to put the Bills at the Oakland 14-yard-line. They ran on the final 7 plays and finished it off with a 1-yard run up the gut to take a 10-3 lead.
After that, the Raiders defense showed up with undrafted rookie James Cowser sacking Tyrod Taylor helping to force a punt.
A shanked 33-yard punt gave the Raiders a short field. They drove to the 8-yard-line, but end zone drops by Seth Roberts and Michael Crabtree would contribute to them settling for a field goal. A Crabtree taunting penalty would make the field goal a 41-yarder, which Janikowski hit to bring the score to 10-6.
Another stop by the Raiders defense gave them the ball back with :30 seconds left in the first half at their own 15-yard-line. Completions to Amari Cooper, Michael Crabtree, and a couple to Latavius Murray set them up for a 47-yard field goal attempt. Sebastian Janikowski hit it to send the two teams into the half with the Bills leading 10-9.