The Raiders are in the midst of a playoff hunt, but you would never know it by the way they played against the Packers on Sunday. This one was over before it began. We just didn’t know it until a few minutes in. It wasn’t long before the rout was on and the Raiders had no defense for it… or offense for that matter.
Coming into this game, we knew the Raiders would need to limit the mistakes if they were to have any chance of beating the undefeated Packers. The hopes of a relatively mistake free game ended on the sixth play of the game when Carson Palmer threw an easy interception right into the hands of Packer linebacker Robert Francois.
The turnover gave the Packers a short field, and two plays later, Ryan Grant took the ball off left guard and ran 47 yards for a touchdown. It was the first touchdown run of 20+ yards the Packers have had in two years. It was a sign of things to come.
Another goal set forth in this game was for the offensive line to get their groove back. That goal ended on the second drive. With the Raiders moving the ball, the drive ended with two offensive line penalties and the line giving up pressure on Palmer resulting in an incompletion.
After that, it was simply Aaron Rodgers picking apart the Raiders’ shaky and confused defense. He completed pass after pass as the Packers scored on five straight possessions in the first half.
It is almost appropriate that the Raiders were burnt in this game by the infamous tuck rule. Charles Woodson forced the fumble in the playoffs in 2001 that was called back by the tuck rule. Today he was on the other side of the ball when Aaron Curry looked to have sacked Aaron Rodgers and Kamerion Wimbley looked to have picked it up and returned it for a touchdown.
The play was initially ruled a fumble which allowed the play to continue. It was then challenged and overturned. The big problem here was Lamarr Houston was called clipping on the fumble-return-that-wasn’t. So instead of the Packers being in second down at the eight yard line after an incompletion, they were given an automatic first down at the Raiders’ four yard line. So in the end, the Raiders would have been better off if the play had been ruled correctly in the first place.
It was all for naught in the end as Mike Mitchell intercepted Rodgers in the end zone two plays later for a touchback. Speaking of all for naught, the Raiders headed into halftime down 31-0 to the Packers.
The Raiders were not done getting screwed over by replay. Or in this case, the lack of replay. To start the third quarter, the Packers had a big return. Despite the fact that everyone watching the television broadcast could see the return man stepped out of bounds, when Hue Jackson challenged the placement, the referees couldn’t accept the challenge, claiming the replay system was not functioning. It gave the Packers 17 extra yards on the return.
The short field gave the Packers the ball just out of field goal range and they quickly drove for a field goal to go up 34-0. This is the second straight week the Raiders were down 34-0 in the third quarter. Last week it was against the offensively challenged Dolphins, though after these last two games, it is the Raiders who are offensively challenged.
The Raiders added a touchdown on their next drive and finished with two garbage time touchdowns and a safety as well as a blocked extra point. On the other hand, the Packers would continue to score at will and the Raiders gave them another gift when Marcel Reece fumbled the ball and the recovery was returned for another Packer touchdown.
After the fumble return touchdown, the Packers took their foot off the gas and took Aaron Rodgers out of the game. They would add another field goal and win easily 46-16.
The Packers had their first punt with 3:11 left in the game. That was after they were just running clock. The game ended when Palmer was hit as he threw for an interception.
One of the only highlights of the game for the Raiders came on a 71 yard Shane Lechler punt. It went well over the head of the returner, and bounced toward the goal line twice. Then at the goal line, the third bounce walked along the goal line to pin the Packers against their own goal line. The Raiders’ safety came as a result.
The Raiders were forced to put the ball in the air 42 times in this game due to the Packers jumping out to a big lead early. Partially as a result, Palmer was intercepted four times which is the most interceptions in one game he has had as a Raider. Previous to this, he had had three interceptions in both of his first two games as a Raider.
The Broncos were able to pull out another overtime win as well to knock the Raiders out of a tie for first in the AFC West. The Raiders will most likely have to win next week against the Lions to keep their playoff hopes alive.
|Oakland Raiders (7-5-0)||Green Bay Packers (12-0-0)|