Week 8 Game Recap: Oakland Raiders 34, Tennessee Titans 25
What you need to know
Oakland came out strong, scoring 17 unanswered points on their first three possessions with a healthy dose of Lamont Jordan. Jordan finished the first quarter with 67 combined yards and a touchdown, but did not have a carry or reception in the second quarter. The Raiders played a ball control offense in the second half and Jordan saw 13 more carries, finishing the game with 136 combined yards and one touchdown.
WR Randy Moss lined up on roughly half of the Raiders’ first half offensive plays, but saw a diminished role in the third quarter and sat all of the fourth quarter. His battery of injuries obviously limited his productivity as his effort was far from 100%. He finished the game with three catches for only 26 yards and no touchdowns.
WR Jerry Porter saw a slight increase in activity due to Moss’ limitations. Porter was targeted eight times, catching six passes for 123 yards and two trips to the end zone. He made the best of Adam “Pacman” Jones’ poor tackling, gaining most of his yardage after the catch against the rookie on both of his long touchdowns.
Titans’ wide receivers Drew Bennett and Brandon Jones did not play in this game due to injury and WR Tyrone Calico left the game midway through the first half with an undisclosed injury. This left QB Steve McNair with TE Erron Kinney and three rookies as his primary receivers: WR Courtney Roby, WR Roydell Williams and TE Bo Scaife. Roby was the Titans’ leading receiver, finishing the game with a respectable 83 yards on seven catches and one touchdown. Kinney added 69 yards on five receptions, mostly difficult yards on seam routes.
With all of the inexperienced receivers running routes, QB Steve McNair really had to show his veteran leadership skills. Unfortunately, the Raiders’ pass rush had other things in mind, sacking him six times and forcing three McNair fumbles. One of those fumbles was recovered in the Titans’ end zone for a Raiders’ touchdown and another ended their positive momentum on what looked to be a sure Titans’ scoring drive. McNair was hit awkwardly at the end of a 19 yard run and his chronically injured lower back received some attention from trainers on the sidelines, but he did not miss a play, returning on the Titans’ next offensive drive.
RB Chris Brown had a productive day, keeping RB Travis Henry on the bench most of the game. Brown finished with 110 combined yards, including a 38 yard sideline scamper to pay dirt. Henry came in the game only once when Brown appeared to be shaken up. Henry did not get a touch and Brown returned to the field on the next play.
Rookie Adam “Pacman” Jones had a 39 yard punt return that set up Chris Brown’s second quarter touchdown. Jones returned the Raiders’ next punt 82 yards for a touchdown, but it was wiped out by a questionable personal foul call. On the defensive end of things, Jones’ pathetic tackling allowed both of Jerry Porter’s touchdowns.
What you ought to know
|QB Kerry Collins, Pass: 17 - 29 - 238 - 3 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 1 - -1 - 0|
Collins managed the game well, rarely leaving the pocket and dealing well with the limitations of Randy Moss. With Moss less than full speed, Collins focused on LaMont Jordan out of the backfield and Jerry Porter. His protection was good and he was only sacked twice. Collins’ lone mistake was an ugly interception that was returned for a 52 yard Titans’ touchdown by Reynaldo Hill just a few seconds before halftime.
Jordan ran with authority, shedding first contact with ease more often than not, en route to a productive game. His first quarter touchdown came on a Kerry Collins’ check down screen pass from just inside the 20 yard line. The Raiders suffered an offensive drought in the second quarter and Jordan did not see a single carry, but he came back in the second half and was the focus of the Raiders’ ball control offense with 13 carries for 45 yards. He finished the game with 136 combined yards and one touchdown.
Crockett had only one carry for two yards in this game.
On Porter’s first catch of the game he caught the ball short, easily spun around rookie Adam “Pacman” Jones and took it 26 yards for a touchdown. It was Porter’s first visit to the end zone since Christmas Day 2004. His fourth quarter touchdown should have been limited to a short gain, but Porter again thwarted Jones’ feeble attempt at pushing him out of bounds after the catch and sprinted 44 yards to the end zone. Porter benefited the most from Randy Moss’ injury limitations, finishing with 123 yards on six grabs and two touchdowns.
Moss was in and out of the game through the first three quarters and was obviously not functioning at 100%. He was not targeted in the third quarter and did not see the field in the fourth. Moss finished with only three catches for 26 yards.
Williams was targeted twice, once in the red zone, and caught one pass for six yards.
Whitted picked up 24 yards on a reverse in the first quarter. He was not targeted as a wide receiver by Kerry Collins.
Gabriel’s three targets included one in the red zone, but he was unable to make any receptions.
Foschi made two catches for 14 yards.
Anderson was targeted once in the end zone on a first quarter scoring drive, but the pass was well over his head.
Janikowski was perfect on the day, hitting from 22 yards, 32 yards and all four extra points.
The Oakland rushing defense gave up 97 yards and one rushing touchdown to Titans’ RB Chris Brown and 38 of those yards came on his touchdown run. QB Steve McNair added another 41 yards scrambling. Overall, not a bad performance by one of the league’s most porous defenses and it was enough for the Raiders to record a win.
With Pro Bowl CB Charles Woodson missing the game due to injury, the Raiders were forced to rely on a less experienced secondary. CB Nnamdi Asomugha kept rookie WR Roydell Williams from having a big game by tipping away two big passes, one of which would likely have been a touchdown. The Raiders pass rush sacked Steve McNair six times, causing three fumbles. One of those fumbles came late in the second quarter when Warren Sapp sacked Steve McNair at the goal line and the Raiders recovered the fumble in the end zone for a touchdown.
|QB Steve McNair, Pass: 26 - 40 - 229 - 1 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 5 - 41 - 0|
McNair displayed veteran leadership on a number of occasions, but had a pair of critical fumbles. He took an upending hit at the end of a nine yard run in the third quarter and his sore back needed the attention of Tennessee trainers on the sidelines. He did return on the next offensive possession, but looked to be a step slower than usual and took another Warren Sapp sack to force a punt. McNair’s rookie receiving corps performed as well as could be expected, but with Drew Bennett and Tyrone Calico both out, nothing came easily.
|RB Chris Brown, Rush: 19 - 97 - 1, Rec: 2 - 13 - 0 (3 targets)|
Brown recovered from last week’s shoulder injury and put in a solid performance. His second quarter touchdown came when he picked his way through the line and scampered 38 yards down the sideline to pay dirt, tossing off a couple of half-hearted tackles along the way. Brown came up limping after the last play of the third quarter and Travis Henry took the next handoff, but Brown returned to the game on the following play. With the Titan’s playing from behind, Brown saw only two fourth quarter carries. He finished with 110 combined yards and a touchdown.
Henry returned from his four game suspension and was expected to share carries with the oft-injured incumbent RB Chris Brown. This plan never materialized as Brown dodged the injury bug and had a solid game. Henry saw the field once when Brown was shaken up on the last play of the third quarter, but he didn’t touch the ball and Brown returned on the following play.
With the regular starters all hobbled by injury, the rookie was Steve McNair’s leading receiver. Roby showed good quickness and sure hands in reeling in seven passes for 83 yards and a touchdown.
The rookie WR finished with only 25 yards on three catches, but was inches away from a big day. Williams nearly had a couple of long receptions, one of which would likely have been a touchdown, but Raider corner back Nnamdi Asomugha was able to tip both passes away at the last second. Williams also lost a 15 yard reception to a holding penalty.
Calico left the game midway through the first half with an undisclosed injury. He finished with one catch on one target for six yards.
Kinney looked to be the primary pass-catching tight end in this offense that fielded three tight end sets on a large percentage of plays in this game. He finished with five catches for 69 yards and had a 14 yard reception called back by penalty.
The rookie tight end lined up as a fullback often and was targeted on three of Steve McNair’s first four passes, only one of which was caught for positive yards. Scaife looked like a rookie and frustrated McNair when he didn’t turn to look for a short pass on third and two. McNair shied away from him a bit after that miscue, but Scaife did redeem himself making an acrobatic 19 yard sideline catch in the fourth quarter.
Troupe’s pair of targets led to a pair of catches for only nine yards. Erron Kinney was the primary ball catching tight end in this game.
Bironas briefly visited the doghouse by missing the extra point attempt after the Titans’ first touchdown. He later hit field goals of 39 and 24 yards.
Raider RB Lamont Jordan had 20 carries for only 67 yards on the ground, a mediocre total, but added 69 yards through the air on short dump off passes. This dual threat helped keep Tennessee on its toes and Jordan recorded carries of 12 and 20 yards. He was stopped for a loss only once and that came in the game’s final seconds when the Raiders were just running out the clock.
Kerry Collins rarely had to leave the pocket and had a sufficient amount of time to operate on most passing plays. He was sacked twice and threw an ugly interception at the end of the first half, but all in all, the Titans’ defense didn’t give him much trouble.