Raiders loses continue

The Oakland Raiders have now lost 11 consecutive games and 17 of its last 18 in the AFC West.

Raiders Report Card:

PASSING OFFENSE: D -- Two trips to the red zone netted only three points. On the first, QB Andrew Walter telegraphed a corner route to WR Randy Moss, with Champ Bailey intercepting at the 1. On the second, consecutive sacks forced the Raiders to settle for a 47-yard field goal. Walter threw some nice passes, in particular a 51-yard strike to Moss. TE Courtney Anderson caught three passes for 56 yards. Bottom line -- only a field goal.

RUSHING OFFENSE: D -- LaMont Jordan rushed for 60 yards on 23 carries and a couple of late gainers got him that much. The Raiders missed Justin Fargas, lost before halftime with a shoulder subluxation. Fargas had three carries for 11 yards. In all, just 85 yards on 27 carries (2.8 per attempt) after running for 348 yards in the previous two games. Only two rushing first downs.

PASS DEFENSE: B -- Just one major error, but it was a big one. The secondary allowed Javon Walker to get loose on a 54-yard pass play that set up the game's only touchdown even though the Raiders had discussed that very play during a commercial break moments before. Walker beat Nnamdi Asomugha, who got no safety help. The Raiders got a break when they allowed Cecil Sapp to get open on a swing pass on third-and-goal. Sapp dropped a sure touchdown.

RUSH DEFENSE: B-minus -- The Broncos rushed for 144 yards on 31 carries, but those figures were inflated by a 29-yard run on a double reverse by WR Javon Walker. Lead back Tatum Bell averaged 3.6 yards per attempt with 23 carries and 83 yards. QB Jake Plummer got loose for 30 yards on six scrambles.

SPECIAL TEAMS: B -- Sebastian Janikowski can hardly be blamed for his first missed field goal, which had the distance from 54 yards but was wide right. Shane Lechler averaged 55 yards on four punts with a net of 42.7 and one touchback. No big returns, but Chris Carr fought off two blockers to force a Darrent Williams fumble late in the game that helped the Raiders stay within striking distance.

COACHING: C -- Can't find fault with playing it safe when Walter was backed up near his own goal line. The Raiders appeared ready to play and had a better second half against a top opponent than in either of the previous two weeks. Questionable personnel use as Ronald Curry, a top-notch receiver on third down, only got a handful of snaps as the Raiders struggled to move the chains. Chad Slaughter was forced to sub for OT Langston Walker (concussion) and showed the effects of not having worked on the right side with four false starts.

Broncos Report Card:

PASSING OFFENSE: D-minus -- Denver had 35 yards passing in the final three quarters. The Broncos were very conservative after hitting a 54-yard pass to Javon Walker in the first quarter. Not wanting to take any chances after building a 13-0 lead in the first half, Denver handed the game over to the defense to win. That approach did work, but the Broncos are eventually going to need more from their passing offense.

RUSHING OFFENSE: C-minus -- Tatum Bell averaged only 3.6 yards against a defense that was ranked 29th in the NFL before last week's games. Denver's biggest runs were a 19-yard scramble by QB Jake Plummer and a 29-yard reverse to Walker. The Broncos couldn't sustain many drives in the second half because the running game wasn't clicking.

PASS DEFENSE: A-minus -- Denver gave up one long pass, a 51-yard gain to Randy Moss. Aside from that, the defense kept Andrew Walter off balance with a good pass rush. CB Champ Bailey had a big interception near the goal line late in the first half. The Broncos also forced a fumble on a short reception by Oakland's LaMont Jordan. Denver doesn't have many holes in the secondary and isn't giving up many big plays.

RUSH DEFENSE: A -- Oakland tried to run, with 30 rushing attempts. But Denver allowed only one run longer than 10 yards and gave up 2.8 yards per carry. The Broncos punished LaMont Jordan, who had 60 yards on 23 carries. The defensive line is playing well, and the linebackers have been fast to the ball as usual. Denver is allowing fewer than 4 yards per carry to opponents this year.

SPECIAL TEAMS: C -- The Broncos had a couple of penalties that set them back, but the special teams as a whole are playing much better than they did during a disastrous first three weeks. Quincy Morgan doesn't get many opportunities to return kickoffs because Denver doesn't allow many points, but he has big-play potential. PR Darrent Williams is also getting comfortable after a slow start.

COACHING: B -- The Broncos did what they had to against Oakland. They took a 13-0 lead in the first half and played conservatively after that, figuring the Raiders couldn't score two touchdowns. They were right, as Oakland only put a field goal on the board. But at some point, Denver has to figure out what is holding back its offense. The Broncos haven't scored more than 17 points in a game yet and couldn't break out against a mediocre Raiders defense.


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