The Bengals have their first-ever victory in Oakland, a 33-13 season-opening win over the Raiders that put Cincinnati in sole possession of first place in the AFC North Division.
Following season-opening losses by Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Cleveland, the 1-0 Bengals stand alone at the top of the division after one week.
The Bengals accomplished all that with an efficient maiden 2015 performance, thanks to a hard-charging offense that totaled 396 yards and a stifling defense that held the Raiders to 246.
"I was pleased with the victory," Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said. "Obviously, we have a lot of work to do. I thought we left a lot out there offensively today. Defensively, we have to do better, and same thing with special teams. We have things to work on it. I’m proud of the guys. We stayed true to the process, but we have work to do. It’s probably a good thing to have after a good win. It was a good strong win.”
Rejuvenated quarterback Andy Dalton was the Bengals' catalyst, passing for 269 yards and a pair of touchdowns to tight end Tyler Eifert, who caught nine passes for a game- and career-high 104 yards after missing all but one quarter last season.
"He’s a great weapon to have, he does a nice job with the run game and a good job receiving the football," Lewis said of Eifert. "He’s good in match-ups that way. He makes the things go, if they rotate coverage one-way or another. You got guys who can win match-ups. A big, tall guy is what football comes to. We have big long guys, and big long guys have opportunities to make plays and put the ball where it belongs.”
Eifert was merely happy to be on the field again and contributing. "It’s been a lot of hard work coming back," he said. "To go out there and have a great game and help our team win was great. So we just have to keep going. This is only Week 1. So let’s just keep getting better.”
Dalton finished 25-of-34 passing with a rating of 115.9. He had a QB rating of 90. His top wide-receiving target was A.J. Green with five catches for 63 yards.
"I think even with everything that we were able to do today, we still had some other chances that we could have hit some more plays," said Dalton. "It’s great having all our guys back. Our guys played well. We spread it around, got both backs going and that’s what we wanted to do.”
Running back Jeremy Hill also scored twice as the Bengals won for the first time in 11 trips to Oakland in the opener for both teams.
Hill and running mate Giovani Bernard both rushed for 63 yards; Hill on 19 carries and Bernard on eight totes.
The Bengals totaled 127 yards on the ground while more than doubling the Raiders' total of 63.
It helped make a winner of former Raiders head coach and current Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson in his return to old stomping grounds in Oakland.
"Well, it’s satisfying to win. Obviously, like I said before, this place will always be special to me because of Al Davis," Jackson said. "Coach Davis was tremendous to me, and gave me an opportunity with this organization. But, at the end of the day, I work for the Bengals, and it’s always good to come on the road and win, especially when we haven’t won here. So our guys took care of business, it was a team win. We’re looking forward to next week.”
Oakland played most of the game with second-string quarterback Matt McGloin under center. Starter Derek Carr left in the second quarter when he suffered a finger injury while stiff-arming on a scramble Bengals cornerback Adam Jones, who led Cincinnati with 10 tackles. Linebacker Vincent Rey was next with nine tackles.
Oakland didn't make it into Bengals territory until the fourth quarter. Cincinnati lost the shutout on a McGloin passing touchdown to receiving back Marcel Reece, who added a second score from McGloin later in the quarter.
The Bengals were attempting to post the NFL's first season-opening shutout since 2009. They settled for a beat down in Jack Del Rio's head-coaching debut with the Raiders.
Defensive tackle Geno Atkins and end Carlos Dunlap each came up with a sack for the Bengals, who had the fewest sacks in the league last season. Safety Reggie Nelson had an interception as the Bengals won the turnover battle, 2-0.
McGloin, who had a solid preseason, wasn't bad in relief of Carr. He finished 23-of-31 passing for 142 yards with the two passing scores to Reece for a 91.1 rating. Carr was 7-of-12 for 61 yards before departing.
The Bengals held big Raiders back Latavius Murray to 11 carries for 44 yards, with a long gain of 12. Murray added seven catches for 36 yards.
Raiders rookie receiver Amari Cooper had five catches for 47 yards in his NFL debut.
The Bengals led 7-0 after one quarter, on a Hill three-yard rushing touchdown. They took control with a 17-point second quarter on the way to a 24-0 halftime lead.
Mike Nugent hit a pair of field goals from 32 and 35 yards for the Bengals, but missed an extra-point kick at the new length, making him part of an early trend for kickers around the league on point-after kicks.
More from the Associated Press:
The tone was set from the start Sunday as the Raiders went three-and-out on their first possession. Dalton then moved the ball easily on an 11-play drive capped by Hill's 3-yard score on fourth-and-1 when he got outside of Ray-Ray Armstrong and raced past Ben Heeney into the end zone.
Dalton frequently found the middle of the field open against a Raiders defense that lost starting safety Nate Allen to a knee injury in the first half. The biggest beneficiary was Eifert, who had a career day.
Dalton hit Eifert on scoring strikes in the closing seconds of the first half to make it 24-0 and then late in the third quarter to make it 30-0, driving Oakland fans to boo or head to the exits.
After 12 straight years without a winning record or playoff berth, the Raiders were hoping for more success with Del Rio in charge and Carr back for his second season as quarterback. But Carr once again struggled to get the ball downfield, before leaving. There was no immediate word on the severity of his injury.
The Raiders didn't take a snap in Cincinnati territory until the first play of the fourth quarter against a Bengals defense that looked improved.
The game was chippy with several personal fouls, including one on Jones for ripping off Cooper's helmet then bashing Cooper's head on his own helmet. Oakland's Austin Howard, who was already called for holding on the play, then shoved Jones as a mild skirmish broke out.
"Whatever you saw happen, that’s what happened. I’m here to play football," Jones said. "I don’t back down from anybody, and I’m not out here trying to start anything. I’m just out here playing football. I was in the moment on that play. Like I said, I’m just out playing football. I’m not out to do that. I don’t want to hurt my team in any form or fashion, but I have to make sure I protect myself, too.”
The penalties wiped out a 60-yard run by Jamize Olawale.
Larry Asante led the Raiders with eight tackles. The Raiders did not have a sack.