Yet another exciting, come-from-behind win for the Raiders. In the first half they couldn’t score a touchdown and to begin the third quarter, they couldn’t stop them either. Once they were down by 15 points midway through the third quarter, they somehow flipped the switch and went on a 29-0 run to end it.
It’s a short week heading into a huge Thursday night match-up with the Chiefs. So, with that in mind, this week’s B&B will be the abridged version, focusing on the most pivotal plays.
Even with a slow start to his day, he was still the hero for the Raiders. His first big play was a tackle for a two-yard loss in which he fought through a blocker to get into the backfield. It helped lead to a punt and gave the Raiders :30 seconds to drive for a field goal at the end of the first half.
His one major mistake led out the second half with the Bills at the Oakland 12-yard-line, he bit on the read option to allow Tyrod Taylor to run for a touchdown. The Bills would score again on their next drive to take a 24-9 lead. But the scoring would stop there for the Bills.
The Raiders would pull back to within one point on two-straight touchdown drives. Then on third and 15, Mack got pressure to force an incomplete and a second-straight Bills three-and-out. Another touchdown drive for the Raiders completed the comeback and on three straight plays, Mack was an unstoppable force. He had a run stuff, a pressure for an incompletion, and a hit on Taylor as he threw for another incompletion and third straight three-and-out.
You should be noticing a trend here as Mack just kept getting closer and closer to Taylor. The next series, with the Bills backed up to their own goal line, Mack got in the backfield again, this time hitting the ball as Taylor threw it. The ball fluttered and was picked off by Nate Allen to give the Raiders possession at the 16-yard-line. They would score their final touchdown in four plays, adding a 2-point conversion to take a 38-24 lead.
The Bills began to drive to try and cut into the lead, but Mack would complete his trend at getting to the quarterback to stop it. He went from pressure, to hit, to hit the ball as it was thrown, to strip sack and recovery to end the threat. It was the second game in a row he ended with a strip sack and recovery.
His first key play wasn’t even a pass. On third and five he got the defense to jump offsides with a hard count to get the first down. He hooked up with Amari Cooper for a 51-yard play that was called back by an illegal formation penalty.
The second drive, with the Raiders down 3-0, he connected with Mychal Rivera for 26 yards on third and 9 and the Raiders added a field goal to tie it up at 3-3.
Midway through the second quarter, he would have had touchdown pass had Seth Roberts and Michael Crabtree not both dropped passes in the end zone. Instead it was another field goal. Then the Raiders got the ball back with :30 left in the half and Carr orchestrated another scoring drive. He found Cooper for 22 yards and Crabtree for 17 yards, taking two timeouts to stop the clock with :15 seconds left. A couple dumpoffs to Latavaius Murray who got out of bounds and the Raiders were able to add a third field goal heading into the half.
An uncalled pass interference kept the Raiders from moving the ball on their first series of the second half. By the time Carr got the ball back, he was in a 24-9 hole. He dug out of it quickly.
Completions to Clive Walford, Roberts, and Crabtree would put the team in first and goal at the 5-yard-line. A 3-yard pass to Crabtree in the back of the end zone would finish it off with a touchdown.
A short field and some strong running would put another touchdown on the board to make it once again a one-point game at 24-23. The ensuing drive was kept alive by a 22-yard pass to Rivera on third and 10. It was completed with an absolutely beautiful pass that dropped perfectly over Amari Cooper’s shoulder for a 37-yard touchdown for the go ahead touchdown.
On any other team, Irvin would be getting a lot more attention for the way he’s been playing lately. Irvin has quietly had a sack in three straight games to give him 5.0 on the season. His sack came early in the game and it was a big play. With the Bills in third and goal from the three, Irvin put on a relentless pursuit to sack Taylor for a 6-yard loss and force them to settle for a field goal.
In the second quarter, he got pressure on third and 24 to force and incompletion and a punt. The first two three-and-outs the Raiders forced in the third quarter to begin their comeback, Irvin had a pressure for an incompletion on third down and a run stuff for no gain. By the third defensive series, the Raiders had taken the lead. He also made the final tackle of the game
The Raiders first scoring drive began with Murray breaking off a 22-yard run. Their next scoring drive featured an 11-yard run. Their third scoring drive ended with two-straight dump passes for 10 yards and 8 yards, with Murray getting out of bounds each time to stop the clock and put the team in field goal range to end the first half.
The Raiders’ first touchdown drive midway through the third quarter featured a 14-yard run by Murray. The next drive was capped by Murray driving through the middle of the line for a one-yard touchdown. After the interception gave the Raiders the ball at the 16-yard-line, a 5-yard run by Murray on third and 2 kept it going, followed by his 3-yard touchdown run.
After that a series of short runs to drain clock would bring down Murray’s overall average. He finished with over 100 yards from scrimmage with 82 yards rushing and 2 touchdowns along with 23 yards on 3 catches. He is now tied for third in the league with 11 rushing touchdowns.
Donald Penn, Gabe Jackson, Kelechi Osemele
The 22-yard run by Murray on the first scoring drive was thanks to a great seal block by Penn. Jackson laid key blocks on runs of 11 and 8 yards on the Raiders’ second scoring drive.
Jackson and Osemele both laid key blocks on a 14-yard run on the Raiders first touchdown drive in the third quarter. The following drive saw Jalen Richard go on a 21-yard run thanks to key blocks from Penn and Osemele. It ended with Murray following Jackson and Osemele for a one-yard touchdown run.
Murray picked up a third down on a 5-yard run behind blocks from Penn and Osemele. He punched through into the end zone on the next play behind a Jackson block.
These maulers helped the Raiders running backs average 4.6 yards per carry and didn’t give up a sack to the team that came in with the second most sacks in the league (33).
He keeps proving his worth both as a running back and as a return man. Consecutive runs of 8 and 2 yards gave the Raiders a first down at the 11-yard-line on the second scoring drive.
Following the Raiders first touchdown in the third quarter and a defensive stand, A 17-yard punt return by Richard set the Raider up at the Buffalo 38-yard-line. Richard then broke off a 21-yard run to put the Raiders at the 13-yard-line and they would score their second touchdown a few plays later.
With the Raiders at the Buffalo 16-yard-line after a turnover, Richard cut that in half with an 8-yard run. Two plays later they scored their final touchdown of the day. He finished averaging 5.9 yards on 9 carries for 53 yards.
Michael Crabtree, Amari Cooper
Both had drops early on, but both would make up for it big time later. Cooper’s big play came on the first series, but the 51-yard catch and run was called back by an Austin Howard illegal formation penalty.
Both would have big catches on the Raiders’ final drive of the first half leading to a field goal to pull to 10-9 at the half. Crabtree had a nice looking sliding 19-yard grab to put the Raiders in first and goal at the five-yard-line. Two plays later, Crabtree caught the touchdown from three yards out.
With the Raiders having pulled to within one point at 24-23, Cooper got behind his man and Carr placed a pass right on him, where Cooper made the over-the-shoulder grab, making sure not to let his knee touch as he dove over the goal line for the 37-yard touchdown to give the Raiders their first lead at 30-24.
Taking over at slot cornerback with DJ Hayden lost for the season, Carrie held up well. The one big catch he gave up, he actually defended, but the receiver still managed to catch it off the deflection for a 22-yard gain.
On the first two three-and-outs the Raiders forced in the third quarter, Carry had tight coverage to force an incompletion on third down, and a pass defended. In total he had tight coverage or a pass defended to force incompletions on four targets of six targets at his receiver.
Represented 12 points in the game, including all 9 of the Raiders points in the first half on three field goals (47, 41, 47).
Taiwan Jones, Andre Holmes – Special teams stars, these two are. Jones saved a Marquette King punt from going in the end zone and Holmes downed it at the 4-yard-line. Jones laid a block on a 17-yard Richard punt return and Holmes made the tackle on a kick return at the 14-yard-line.