By Shaun Brett – Oakland Raiders Writer
The Oakland Raiders came into Indianapolis on the back of two underwhelming performances against the Kansas City Chiefs and Minnesota Vikings. Little hope was given to the Raiders by experts and analysts alike, however, former San Francisco 49ers and Detroit Lions coach Steve Mariucci did believe in the Raiders to pull off the upset. The Raiders didn’t disappoint as they pulled off a critical road win beating the Indianapolis Colts 31-24.
In my game preview, I spoke about the Raiders getting off to a fast start and they should show the upbeat intense tempo that they did in Week 1 against the Denver Broncos.
Raiders raced into 14-0 lead with the big play coming from former Green Bay Packers Wide receiver Trevor Davis. Coach Jon Gruden showed why he has the tag of an offensive guru when he dialled an end-around to Davis, who took it to the house for a 60 yard Touchdown. A fumble from Rookie Running Back Josh Jacobs gifted the Colts great field position in which they cashed with Quarterback Jacoby Brissett throwing a 5 yard TD to Tight End Jack Doyle.
The Raiders would hit back with another touchdown of their own shortly after, in the form of Wide receiver Tyrell Williams. A 19 yard pass from quarterback Derek Carr led to Williams giving the Raiders a little breathing space at the half. The Raiders entered half time with a 21-10 lead.
The second half started sloppy with both teams suffering from dropped balls from their receivers. The Colts did however get the first score to reduce the deficit to 24-17 and make it a one-possession game. It looked like the Colts would make another 4th quarter come back as Jacoby Brissett attempted a pass to Tight End Jack Doyle, but Raiders Safety Erik Harris had other ideas as he intercepted Brissett and returned it for his first TD for the Raiders on the season.
The Colts did manage to get a final score of their own in garbage time, as Tight End Eric Ebron with a 48-yard reception from Brissett. The Raiders though would hold out and close the game for a fantastic road win.
The Raiders defense had a day to remember they forced 2 turnovers by the Colts. The defense contained Running Back Marlon Mack all day and eventually went off injured this put the game in the hands of Brissett. Brissett faced many 3rd and long situations and the Raiders forced the Colts into many punting situations with great play from the secondary. With the Raiders nothing is simple the game will be remembered for Vontaze Burfict’s hit on Right End Jack Doyle which ultimately lead to Burfict’s ejection from the game.
The Raiders offense put points on the board in the first half in style. In the 2nd half, the Raiders offense sputtered and stumbled once again which was a worry. Raiders Quarterback Derek Carr finished the day with 21-31 completions 189 yards passing two touchdowns and zero interceptions. Carr made the plays when it mattered using his weapons early in the form of Tight End Darren Waller and Running Back Josh Jacobs. The combination of both Waller and Jacobs ensured the chains kept moving at critical times. Jacobs set a new a Raiders record with 307 yards through first four games.
The Raiders fly straight out of Indianapolis and head to London to face the Chicago Bears. This is a mouthwatering clash as this will be the first time the Raiders come face to face with Kahlil Mack since the trade the last offseason. Can the Raiders finally win London?
(Feature Photo – Credit: Justin Casterline/Getty Images)