The Oakland Raiders rallied from a 14-point deficit to defeat the Jacksonville Jaguars in overtime 26-23 , with a 40-yard field goal from Sebastian Janikowski.
It was one of those head-scratching type of wins that had you using every expletive in the English language in the first half, and praising the Raiders resiliency in the second half. The overall summation of yesterday’s game for the Silver and Black was that it wasn’t bad, it wasn’t pretty, but they got the “W”.
“An ugly win is better than a pretty loss,” said Carson Palmer. “I know that. I’m just proud of the way we fought because it wasn’t pretty.
“We did not play up to our standard and play the way we’re coached. But we hung in there and defense played great giving us the ball back. It’s just good to get out of here with a win.”
Palmer had a big second half, and for the game ended up with 298 yards passing, and two touchdowns (one rushing). He did have two turnovers, one being a costly fumble early in the fourth quarter that resulted into a Jaguars field goal, but managed to overcome that gaffe, and lead Oakland to victory.
Wide receivers Darrius Heyward-Bey and Denarius Moore had solid games, and made key plays in the Raiders win as well. Heyward-Bey (his second game back from a concussion), had four catches for 85 yards, while Moore had four catches for 36 yards, and touchdown score that jump started Oakland’s second half rally.
Running back Darren McFadden had yet another tough running game with 19 carries for only 53 yards and no touchdown. It’s a crying shame that offensive coordinator Greg Knapp could not take advantage of the 30th ranked defense in the league. They need to reconfigure their running attack ASAP, because relying on Palmer too much has created an unbalanced offense, which is why the Raiders have struggled on this side of the ball during the first half for most of the season.
The defense was tremendous in the second half, after giving up two touchdowns in the first half. Head coach Dennis Allen, and defensive coordinator Jason Tarver are slowly starting to put together schemes on this side of the ball that plays to the Raiders strength. Defensive end Lamar Houston, along with defensive tackle Richard Seymour had phenomenal games, as they both created havoc upfront for the Jacksonville Jaguars O-Line all game long. Houston also caused the key fumble in overtime that set-up Janikowski’s game-winning field goal.
The good thing about their performance is that they realize they have to play like this for the whole 60 minutes.
“We’re not satisfied. We understand that we have to play better, that we have to get better as a team,” said Seymour. “We can’t play that brand of ball against really good football teams and expect to win. We understand that we have to play better. We’ll take the win, we’ll take any win in this league.”
Allen dodged a bullet with this come from behind victory, as well as an insurmountable possible hole within the division. Now, only one game out of a possible 3-way tie for first place, the Raiders head to Kansas City to take on their division rivals’ the Chiefs. Can Allen lead the Silver and Black to a two-game winning streak? I’m sure this will be the hot-bed topic around the office water cooler for Raider Nation come Monday morning.
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Written by Arthur Kai