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Raiders vs. Broncos first half recap

The Oakland Raiders wasted no time showing their true potential in Denver toady, taking a 21-0 lead in the first seven minutes of play. The first score came on a 43-yard pass from Jason Campbell to a wide open Zach Miller who ran most of that distance for the first offensive score. Just eight second later, on a Broncos’ first and ten, Chris Johnson intercepted a Kyle Orton pass and took it to the barn for a 14-0 Raiders lead. After that Demaryius Thomas, the Bronco’s back-up wide receiver, decided that he didn’t like that ball allowing Michael Huff to strip it away. It was recovered by rookie defensive end Lamarr Houston and although it appeared Houston returned it for a TD, a whistle had actually blown the play dead and head coach Tom Cable had to challenge the ball to get the call of a fumble in the Raiders favor. A few plays later, Darren McFadden punched it into the end zone from four yards out.

Soon after, the Denver Broncos were faced with a 4th down and one, barely inside Raiders territory. Being down 21-0 early on, the Broncos decided to go for it and did not convert. That would lead to a Raiders field goal by Sebastian Janikowski. Following a quick three-and-out by the Broncos, which included a sack from strong-side linebacker Kamerion Wimbley, the Raiders would take over at their own 43-yard line after a nice punt return from wide receiver Nick Miller. The First quarter would end with the Raiders on the Broncos’ nine yard line threatening to score again and already in control with a 24-0 lead. That drive would close early on in the second quarter with a quick screen pass to Darren McFadden with plowed through Renaldo Hill to give the Raiders a 31-0 lead really early on in the second quarter.

 On the following kickoff, the Broncos returner muffed the kick and was forced down at the Broncos’ own ten yard line. And boo’s rained heavily from the hometown crowd. That drive would lead to another Denver punt from deep in their own territory. On the ensuing drive, Jared Veldheer picked up his third false start of the first half. At this point, the Raiders had acquired three penalties, all on Veldheer, who appears to have taken over the left tackle spot from Mario Henderson. Two plays later, Jacoby Ford, the rookie wide out from Clemson, would go 23-yards on his second end reverse of that day for another first down. After a dump down from Campbell to Michael Bush that picked up a second consecutive first down, Campbell would use the Raider third and final timeout of the first half.

Jason Campbell would finish this drive off with negative results, taking the Raiders third and final timeout of the first half with 11:50 left in the second quarter, he would follow that up with a bad pass to Zach Miller that was thrown behind the tight end, and then get caught in the backfield being a ball patter for a sack by Broncos’ linebacker D.J. Williams. That would force a Raiders punt.

Shortly after that, the Raiders would get their third defensive turnover on a Kyle Orton fumble where Orton got out of two potential sacks and tried to get a first down, but Mike Mitchell forced a fumble that was recovered by Tyvon Branch deep in Denver territory. The Raiders would end up with a first-and-goal from the Denver five yard line before Darren McFadden punched it in from four yards out for his third touchdown of the day, giving the Raiders a 38-0 lead with 7:58 to go in the second quarter. I’m pretty sure the Broncos’ wanted to go home at this point judging by the look on their faces. At this point, Oakland had 16 first downs to the Broncos’ one first down. The Raiders were on pace to score 99 points and they would force another three-and-out against the Bronco’s offense.

Following some more screw ups from quarterback Jason Campbell, the Broncos would take the ball on a sixty-plus yard drive sand get their first points of the day by scoring a touchdown from Orton to Knowshon Moreno shortly after the two-minute warning.

Following that, we learned that center Samson Satele would be out for the rest of the game with a concussion. Jared Veldheer would be moved to center and Mario Henderson would get his first playing time of the day as the left tackle heretofore.

The Raiders went wild on offense and defense in the first quarter, putting up 275 total yards and holding the Broncos to just 122, while outscoring them 38-0. The Raiders accumulated 17 first downs to Denver’s five and forced three turnovers and not giving the ball up at all. They would hold the ball for 19:44 and the Broncos would hold the remaining 10:16.