QB Campbell, Raiders overwhelm Seahawks 33-3By JOSH DUBOW, AP Sports Writer Sunday, Oct 31, 2010
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP)—The Oakland Raiders followed a win with a masterpiece instead of a dud for a change.
Jason Campbell(notes) threw for 310 yards and two touchdowns, and Oakland’s defense did the rest to help the Raiders even their record at the midpoint of the season with a 33-3 victory over the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday.
Darren McFadden(notes) ran for 111 yards as the Raiders (4-4) reached the .500 mark this late in the season for the first time since 2002. They also finally put together back-to-back wins, a feat that had eluded them the past two seasons.
“It just continues to build confidence,” McFadden said. “You win one then come back the next week and flop, you’re back to like zero. You win two in a row and it builds your confidence even more.”
Oakland had lost its last seven games following a win, outscored by an average of 17 points. This time, the Raiders followed up their 59-point offensive outburst in Denver a week ago with a shutdown defensive effort against the Seahawks (4-3).
“It means we are growing, we are getting better and we got some things going in the right direction and there’s some consistency with that for the first time in quite some time,” coach Tom Cable said.
Oakland didn’t allow a first down until more than 27 minutes into the game, had eight sacks and gave up just 162 yards of offense, including 47 on the ground. It was the fewest yards allowed by the Raiders since 2006 and the fewest points allowed since shutting out Kansas City in the final game of the 2002 season.
The Raiders also gained 545 yards, marking the first time in franchise history they put together back-to-back 500-yard performances. Oakland has outscored the opposition 92-17 the past two weeks—the most lopsided two-game stretch for the franchise since 1967.
“There’s no mystery to us on what happened today. We got nothing done,” Seattle coach Pete Carroll said. “We accomplished nothing on any aspect of our ball.”
It wasn’t all good news for the Raiders. Pro Bowl cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha(notes) left the game in the fourth quarter with a sprained right ankle. X-rays were negative and the team did not know how serious the sprain was.
The normally reliable Olindo Mare(notes) missed two field goal attempts for Seattle, ending a streak of 30 consecutive makes on a day all the bounces went Oakland’s way. The Raiders turned one double-deflection into a 55-yard pass play and another into an interception.
The first of those breaks came on a third down late in the third quarter. Campbell’s slant pass hit off Darrius Heyward-Bey’s(notes) knee, bounced up and was bobbled by Jacoby Ford(notes) before Michael Bush(notes) picked it out of the air and rumbled for the big gain. That set up one of Sebastian Janikowski’s(notes) four field goals to give Oakland a 16-0 lead.
On the next possession, Matt Hasselbeck(notes) threw a deep ball to Deon Butler(notes) that cornerback Stanford Routt(notes) deflected. Butler tried to make a diving catch of the batted pass, but the ball popped out right to Tyvon Branch(notes) for an interception.
“The ball just really didn’t bounce our way today,” Seattle cornerback Roy Lewis(notes) said. “That’s all you can say. You’ve got guys out there making plays like Franco Harris on the Immaculate Reception.”
Campbell connected on a 69-yard touchdown pass to Heyward-Bey on the next play to make it 23-0, sending the half-filled Coliseum into delirium.
The only remaining drama was whether the Raiders would finish their first shutout in eight years. Mare finally made a 47-yard field goal with 9:02 remaining to get Seattle on the board.
McFadden had his fourth 100-yard rushing day of the season. Heyward-Bey had a career-high 105 yards receiving and his second career touchdown. Performances like this have put the Raiders in playoff contention for the first time in years.
“We have an opportunity to be one,” Campbell said. “Our main goal is to take everything one step at a time, one game at a time. We can’t get ahead of ourselves.”
Fullback Marcel Reece(notes) also got into the action with a 31-yard run and a 30-yard TD catch on fourth-and-1 in the second quarter. Reece went in motion on the play and was one-on-one with safety Lawyer Milloy(notes) on the outside. Reece beat Milloy on a slant, and when linebacker David Hawthorne(notes) was unable to get over in time, Reece easily scored.
The Raiders sacked Hasselbeck on his first two dropbacks, and it was that kind of half for the Seahawks. They gained just 4 yards in the first quarter.
“It’s like a snowball effect,” said Tommy Kelly(notes), who got the first sack. “I get one, he gets one, everybody wants to get one. It’s like, ‘Can’t let them have all the fun.’ Everybody wants one.”
Notes: The Raiders outscored Boston and San Diego 99-24 in back-to-back games in October 1967. … The Raiders had gained at least 500 yards three times in 246 games since moving back to Oakland in 2005 before turning the trick in consecutive weeks.