Sunday’s game between the Oakland Raiders and the Pittsburgh Steelers was another wild one at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum. Once again, it was another nail biter in the Bay, and the Silver and Black fought from the opening kickoff till the final whistle.
Here are the Extra Points from Week 14:
Jared Cook has no chill - No. 87 got the offense rolling quick. Jared Cook is easily one of the most-underrated players in the NFL, and on the Raiders first drive of the game he did what he does best. First he hauled in a 30-yard over-the-shoulder catch with a hand in his face, and then he followed it up with a 19-yard reception. In a little over four minutes, the dynamic tight end had 49 receiving yards to his name, and helped the Raiders enter the red zone.
Doug Martin takes flight - On third-and-one, the Raiders lined up on the one-yard line after moving the chains down the field on their opening drive of the game, and No. 28 did the rest. The Bay Area native took the handoff from Carr and leapt over the offensive and defensive lines to cross the plane and give the Raiders the first points of the afternoon.
Townsend flips the field - Earning good field position has been… difficult this year for the Raiders, but Sunday afternoon against the Steelers rookie punter Johnny Townsend drilled a shot 57 yards downfield. When Townsend punted, he was backed up within the Raiders’ own 10-yard line, but when the ball landed he had flipped the field. It was a pleasant sight from the former Florida Gator.
Raiders D comes up big on third down - After two face mask penalties against the Raiders — which gave the Steelers 30 yards — Pittsburgh lined up in the red zone, and looked ready to score; however, Raiders defensive tackle Clinton McDonald would sack Ben Roethlisberger on third down, and force the Steelers to attempt a field goal. Steelers kicker Clint Boswell lined up ready to attempt the field goal, but pushed it wide right. The sequence featured an impressive play from the Raiders big man, and a bit of good luck from the football gods.
Steelers controversial catch - With under 20 seconds remaining in the first half, the Steelers offense lined up on the one-yard line on third down, and Roethlisberger fired a dart in the back of the end zone to wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster. What was originally ruled an incomplete pass, ended up being overturned after further review. The former USC Trojan somehow managed to fall out of bounds, gain control of the pass, and kept both feet in with an impressive toe drag to end the quarter. The touchdown put the Steelers up by four points; they also got the ball to start the second half.
Big Ben exits the game - To start the second half, Steelers veteran quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was replaced by second-year signal-caller Josh Dobbs. The Raiders were able to force Dobbs and Co., to punt on his first drive of the game. Roethlisberger’s status changed to questionable to return with a rib injury.
Raiders big fourth-down stop - On a fourth-and-one attempt on the Raiders 43-yard line, the Steelers ran a play-action pass, and as Dobbs rolled left targeting tight end Vance McDonald, Raiders linebacker Tahir Whitehead was attached at the hip, meeting his opponent in stride. Dobb completed his pass to McDonald, but Whitehead was there to snuff it out before they could get the first down. The turnover on downs gave the Silver and Black excellent field position.
Carr’s incomplete pass/fumble? - Uh, don’t really know how to describe this one other than a possible missed call from the officiating crew. On third-and-19, with two minutes left in the third quarter, Carr stepped up in the pocket ready to fire a strike, but the ball slipped out of his fingers as his arm started the throwing motion. The ball sailed seven yards before rolling an additional five, and the Steelers recovered. The play looked like an obvious incomplete pass, as Carr was clearly in the throwing motion, but the play was ruled a fumble.
Another botched incomplete pass/fumble call - Following Carr’s “fumble”, the Raiders defense was determined to get the ball back in the hands of their signal-caller. Rookie defensive end Arden Key came flying around the edge like a bat out of hell, and got a hand on the ball as Dobbs attempted to pass down field. It looked like a fumble, but alas, the refs disagreed.
Ball don’t lie - What a strange sequence of plays, after Carr’s “fumble”, and the missed call on Dobbs’ fumble, the very next play the Steelers signal-caller’s pass was picked off by Raiders linebacker Tahir Whitehead. The turnover did indeed give the Silver and Black another opportunity to score points, but the team was forced to punt once again.
Raiders convert on fourth down - Eight minutes to go in the fourth quarter, and the Raiders within the red zone, Head Coach Jon Gruden left his offense on the field to try and convert a crucial fourth down late in the game. Carr handed the ball off to running back Jalen Richard, who punched his way through the hole, gaining enough yards for the first down, and then some.
Big Lee Smith’s big catch - After the fourth down conversion, Carr and the offense were knocking at the end zone’s door. On a play-action pass, Carr faked to his right, causing the Steelers defense to shift, and left tight end Lee Smith wide open in the end zone on the opposite side of the field. Carr dropped it in the bread basket, and Smith helped put the Raiders up three.
Roethlisberger returns - To start the second half, the Pro Bowl quarterback was listed as questionable to return with a rib injury, but he came back in the final minutes of the fourth quarter to try and lead his team to victory. Roethlisberger completed a handful of big passes, but none was bigger than his completion to Smith-Schuster for a touchdown. The score gave the Steelers another four point lead.
Roberts the Playmaker - The clock was ticking down, and the Raiders needed to get in the red zone, so who did the team call on? Seth Roberts. The wide receiver doesn’t get a lot of praise, but he shows up when Carr needs him most. No. 4 connected with Roberts on a 39-yard pass, that put the Raiders on the six-yard line with less than a minute to play. It was an incredible throw, and an incredible catch from the duo.
The Touchdown - I truly couldn't believe my eyes. It was fourth-and-six. Fourth. And. Six. The Raiders were lined up on the six-yard line with 25 seconds left, and had one chance to take to try and win the game against the Steelers. Carr fired a strike to tight end Derek Carrier who held on for the catch and went untouched into the end zone. The Raiders went 75 yards on eight plays, and capped off a hard-fought win at the Coliseum in thrilling fashion.
Blocked field goal for the win! - After an insane hook-and-ladder play from the Steelers, they lined up ready to attempt a field goal from the 26-yard line. Upon the snap, the Raiders defensive line burst through the line of scrimmage and somehow managed to block the field goal attempt, hoisting the Raiders to victory.
What. A. Game. The Silver and Black defeated the Steelers at home 24-21.
Next week, the Raiders will travel to Cincinnati for a road trip with the Bengals in Week 15.
Go inside the Raiders' locker room before Sunday's game, see arrival photos and see the Raiders warm up at the Coliseum for Week 14 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.