Oakland invokes feelings of pain

Football has a funny way of draining every fiber of your being. Going from euphoric to utter dismay takes just seconds. Oakland knows it all to well.

Raiders Report Card:

PASSING OFFENSE: B-minus -- Aaron Brooks gave the Raiders life, particularly in the first half, when he was 9-for-12 for 97 yards, threw a touchdown pass and escaped Kansas City pressure. He made a clutch 39-yard throw to Ronald Curry on the final drive, only to throw an interception to Jarrad Page into tight coverage with the game on the line. Moss failed to catch a pass and has one catch for 8 yards in his last two games. Brooks was not sacked. Andrew Walter hit two of three passes for 15 yards while Brooks was battling cramps.

RUSHING OFFENSE: C -- Oakland rushed for 133 yards on 39 attempts, including five Brooks scrambles for 34 yards. LaMont Jordan (four carries, 24 yards) was running hard until felled by a torn MCL. Justin Fargas (19 carries, 52 yards) averaged just 2.7 yards per carry. Zack Crockett added 19 yards on five attempts. The Raiders get points for their persistence -- but they needed more.

PASS DEFENSE: C -- With Kansas City focusing on the run, Trent Green (9-for-16, 102 yards, no interceptions) didn't have to do much in his return from a severe concussion. But Green was able to hit some big plays when he needed them most against a pass defense that considers itself among the NFL's elite. He was 3-for-5 for 50 yards on the Chiefs' final scoring drive, including a 24-yard strike to Eddie Kennison despite tight coverage by Nnamdi Asomugha. The Raiders had no interceptions.

RUSH DEFENSE: D -- One week after giving up 63 yards rushing to Denver in the entire game, the Raiders gave up 73 yards on the ground to the Chiefs on the opening possession -- 53 of them by Larry Johnson. Johnson finished with 154 yards on 31 carries and scored two touchdowns, the most yardage an individual back has gotten on the Raiders this season. Kansas City finished with 200 yards on 37 carries. The Raiders allowed this to happen despite assuming correctly entering the game that the Chiefs would run early and often to protect Green.

SPECIAL TEAMS: B-minus -- Except for a 47-yard kickoff return by Dante Hall, the Raiders made no glaring errors. Hall got 11 yards on his only punt return. Shane Lechler punted four times for a 44.8 average and a 37-yard net. Sebastian Janikowski converted field-goal attempts of 41 and 36 yards without a miss. Chris Carr lost a yard on his only punt return and was contained on kickoff returns (23.3 average with a long of 27). A solid but unspectacular effort overall.

COACHING: B-minus -- Coach Art Shell made the right call in starting Brooks, who injected some life into Oakland's anemic pass offense. Brooks' mobility kept Oakland in better down-and-distance situations, and an 8-for-14 performance on third down was the result. Whether it was the scheme of offensive coordinator Tom Walsh or a Kansas City error, the Raiders isolated Ronald Curry on LB Kavika Pittman late, and a 39-yard strike resulted. Can't quibble much with the defensive strategies of Rob Ryan. Raiders defenders seemed to know what was coming but were unable to stop it.

Chiefs Report Card:

PASSING OFFENSE: C -- You can't fault the passing offense for the game plan, which was to avoid passing and, thereby, the potential for disaster with Trent Green seeing his first action in nine weeks. Green completed nine passes and led the game-winning drive with key completions to Eddie Kennison and Samie Parker. Most importantly, he did not turn it over.

RUSHING OFFENSE: A-plus -- Against the NFL's No. 4 defense, the Chiefs made no effort to disguise their intention to run the ball, often lining up with three offensive tackles and the 276-pound Jason Dunn at tight end -- and they still averaged 5.4 yards per carry. Bonus points to Michael Bennett for his best day as a Chief, averaging over 14 yards on three runs.

PASS DEFENSE: B-minus -- It was bothersome that Kansas City could not sack Raiders quarterback Aaron Brooks more than once. The Chiefs held Randy Moss reception-less, a feat that is not what it once was. Furthermore, Kansas City was fortunate that on the Raiders' final play, Randy Moss more or less gave up and Brooks threw a poor pass right to Jarrad Page.

RUSH DEFENSE: B -- Allowing 3.9 yards per carry is respectable, and the Chiefs held Oakland's primary rusher, Justin Fargas to 52 yards on 19 carries, but the Chiefs did not tackle well early in the game, which helped produce the Raiders lead.

SPECIAL TEAMS: C -- Lawrence Tynes' missed field goal nearly cost Kansas City the game. Punter Dustin Colquitt failed to hit a 50-plus yard punt, which had become fairly routine and Dante Hall's one significant return, a 47-yard kick return, was for not since it came just before halftime.

COACHING: A-minus -- An effective game plan -- run, don't do anything dangerous, wait for Oakland to mess up -- worked. And it was an especially wise plan considering the Chiefs were missing several starters and Green was going to be rusty. Had the Raiders gone with Andrew Walter at quarterback instead of Brooks, the game probably would not have been close.


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