RB Michael Bush dives into the end zone after hauling in a pass from QB Carson Palmer. AP Photo.
QB Carson Palmer got his first start at quarterback for the Raiders, completed 18 of 34 pass attempts for 312 yards and 3 TDs, but it wasn't enough as the Denver Broncos overcame a 10-point deficit to defeat the Raiders 38-24 at O.co Coliseum in Oakland.
The Broncos won the opening coin toss and elected to defer their choice to the second half. The Raiders elected to receive the opening kickoff. WR Jacoby Ford returned K Matt Prater's opening kickoff 22 yards to the 20. The Broncos held the Raiders to a three-and-out and Denver took over at their own 23 after a P Shane Lechler punt and a short return.
The Raiders defense returned the favor with a three-and-out of their own and WR Denarius Moore called for and made a fair catch of a P Britton Colquitt punt at the Oakland 27. The Raiders drove into Broncos territory but they were forced to settle for a 48-yard K Sebastian Janikowski field goal attempt. The kick was good and the Raiders took a 3-0 lead with 7:35 left in the first quarter.
TE Daniel Fells fielded the squib kick and returned it to the Denver 41. Thanks in part to a holding penalty, the Raiders forced a three and out and Colquitt came on to punt. The punt was downed at the Raiders 8, but a penalty on Denver allowed the Raiders to request a re-kick. Moore returned the 57-yard punt 12 yards to the Oakland 20.
Thanks in part to a holding penalty, the Broncos held the Raiders to a three and out and WR Quan Cosby was dropped at their 35 after a short return of a 61-yard Lechler punt. QB Tim Tebow capped the 5-play, 65-yard drive with a 27-yard TD pass to WR Eric Decker. Prater's extra point was good and Denver led 7-3 with 1:11 left in the first quarter.
Ford fielded the ensuing kickoff eight yards deep in the end zone and took a knee for a touchback and the Raiders offense hit the field at the Oakland 20. The Raiders drive stalled at the 42 and Cosby called for and made a fair catch of a Lechler punt at his 16. Thanks to a Broncos holding penalty, the Raiders held Denver to a three and out. Colquitt fumbled the snap and threw and incomplete pass. The Raiders took over on downs at the Broncos 14.
The Raiders took advantage as Palmer tossed his first touchdown pass as a Raider as RB Michael Bush dove into the end zone after hauling in a toss from the former Heisman Trophy winner. Janikowski's extra point attempt was good and the Raiders took a 10-7 lead 10:42 left in the 2nd quarter.
After allowing one first down, the Raiders forced a Colquitt punt. Moore returned Colquitt's boot to the Raiders 32. The Raiders next drive started off promisingly enough, but Palmer's deep pass for Moore was picked off by CB Champ Bailey at the Denver 15.
The Broncos picked up one first down courtesy of a defensive penalty, but the Raiders forced a Colquitt punt. Moore returned the 42-yard punt to the Raiders 28. Palmer capped 4-play, 72-yard drive with a 40-yard touchdown strike right down the middle to FB Marcel Reece. The extra point was good and the Raiders led 17-7 with 1:30 left in the 2nd quarter.
Raider penalties kept Denver's next drive alive. However, Prater missed a 43-yard field goal attempt and the Raiders took a 17-7 lead into the locker room at halftime.
Janikowski's opening kickoff of the second half bounced through the end zone for a touchback and Denver took the field at the 20. Tebow capped the 80-yard drive with a 26-yard TD pass to WR Eddie Royal. The extra point was good and the Raiders lead was cut to 17-14 with 10:48 left in the 3rd quarter.
Prater's ensuing kickoff flew out of the back of the end zone for a touchback and the Raiders offense took the field at the 20 for their first possession of the second half.
Palmer capped an 80-yard drive with an 18-yard TD pass to Ford. Janikowski's extra point was good and the Raiders took a 24-14 lead. The Broncos answered with a 43-yard Prater field goal and the Raiders lead was cut to 24-17 with 2:52 left in the 3rd quarter.
The Raiders were on the move but Denver intercepted a tipped pass and returned it to their own 40. RB Willis McGahee ripped off a 60-yard touchdown run and Prater's extra point tied the game at 24-24 as the 3rd quarter came to a close.
RB Taiwan Jones scooped up the bouncing kickoff and returned it to the Oakland 27. The Raiders went three and out and punted the ball back to the Broncos. The Broncos drove to midfield but the Raiders forced a punt. Moore returned Colquitt's 40-yard punt to the Oakland 20. The Raiders were unable to mount a drive and Lechler came on to punt.
Royal returned the punt 85 yards for a touchdown. The extra point was good and Denver took a 31-24 lead with 5:53 left in the 4th quarter.
The ensuing kickoff bounced into the end zone for a touchback and the Raiders took over at their own 20. The Raiders drove out to their own 46 before Denver forced a punt. Lechler's kick was downed at the Denver 23. McGahee padded the lead with a 24-yard TD run. The extra point gave the Broncos a 38-24 lead with 1:53 left in the 4th quarter.
The Raiders fall to 4-4 on the season and will head to San Diego for a Thursday Night Football match up with the San Diego Chargers at QUALCOMM Stadium on NFL Network.