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Quick Snap: Raiders Fall To New England Patriots At Estadio Azteca

Posted Nov 19, 2017

The Oakland Raiders were unable to hold off the reigning Super Bowl champs in Mexico.

Running Back Marshawn Lynch

Well, the Oakland Raiders had a rough day at the office on Sunday.

After traveling to Mexico City, the Silver and Black fell to the New England Patriots 33-8, falling to 4-6 in 2017.

Head Coach Jack Del Rio and his squad will fly back to the Bay Area Sunday night, and then shift their attention to next week’s game against the Denver Broncos. However, before our focus shifts ahead to next week, here are four, quick observations from Sunday’s international affair.

1. Obi Melifonwu got the start

The Raiders rookie safety made his NFL debut two weeks ago against the Miami Dolphins, and Sunday afternoon, Melifonwu earned his first career start, at left cornerback no less.

When the Silver and Black drafted Melifonwu, his on-field versatility was one of the things they said he brought to the table, and we got a chance to see that firsthand Sunday afternoon.

While No. 20 did indeed start the game out wide, he ultimately moved around quite a bit against New England, playing a little safety, and matching up against Rob Gronkowski on several occasions.

That being said, Melifonwu did have a “welcome to the NFL” moment as Brandin Cooks beat him on a 64-yard touchdown early in the third quarter.

2. Tom Brady proved problematic

Nothing new here, but Tom Brady is pretty good at playing football.

The Patriots quarterback enjoyed a strong outing in Mexico City, beginning with the first series of the afternoon, where he went nine for nine, for 61 yards and a touchdown.

There really wasn’t much fall off for Brady after that point either; he finished Week 11 with 339 yards passing, and three touchdowns, as he completed 30 of his 37 pass attempts.

Look, Brady is inarguably one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game, and unfortunately for the Silver and Black, he was in top form Sunday afternoon.

Now, the Raiders certainly didn’t help their cause by giving Brady a plethora of chances with the football, but with his play, Brady showed everyone why he’s one of the elite signal-callers in the game.

3. Marshawn Lynch came to play

After Sunday’s loss to the Patriots, there admittedly aren’t a ton of positives to take away – on either side of the ball – but give credit where it’s due; Marshawn Lynch came to play.

While the Silver and Black did eventually fall to the Patriots, Lynch’s play was one of the few bright spots on the afternoon.

At game’s end, “Beast Mode” had carried the ball 11 times for 67 yards, including a 25-yards scamper in the first half that was his longest run as a Raider.

Now, being down big in the second half isn’t really conducive to pounding the rock, but when Lynch got his chances against the Patriots front, he no doubt made the most of them.

4. The atmosphere was outstanding

It takes a lot to play an NFL game in Mexico City.

Obviously, the travel time is the first thing that comes to mind, but outside of that, logistically it takes a ton of time from a lot of people to get a game like this to happen.

And I must say, the environment at Estadio Azteca did not disappoint.

From whistle to whistle, the crowd was lively, cheering on both teams, particularly so on the big plays.

Estadio Azteca is truly one of the most unique venues in the sports world, and Sunday’s game was certainly evidence of that.

Obviously, the result of the Week 11 game left a little bit to be desired, but from the first to the fourth quarter, the atmosphere really was stellar.