Posts Tagged ‘Las Vegas Raiders’

Josh Jacobs ran for 144 yards and two touchdowns, Amik Robertson returned a fumble 68 yards for a score and the Las Vegas Raiders won their first game of the season, 32-23 over the Denver Broncos on Sunday.

After opening their first season under coach Josh McDaniels by losing three straight one-score games, the Raiders (1-3) managed to do enough on the ground with their biggest rushing game in six years and on defense to hold off Russell Wilson and the Broncos (2-2).

Maxx Crosby had two of Las Vegas’ three sacks, and Robertson had the game-changing play late in the first half as Denver repeatedly failed to take advantage of good field position.

After getting a 5-yard TD pass from Wilson to Courtland Sutton to cap a 34-yard drive in the first quarter, the Broncos turned three other chances with prime field position into one field goal and the fumble by Melvin Gordon III that Robertson returned for the touchdown.

Wilson had his most efficient game of his short tenure in Denver, completing 17 of 25 passes for 237 yards and two TDs. He also ran for a 3-yard TD that cut the Raiders’ lead to 25-23 after completing a 55-yard pass to KJ Hamler.

Jacobs put it away with a 7-yard TD run with 2:01 to play. He became the first Raiders player to rush for at least 130 yards and two TDs in a game since Darren McFadden did it in 2011 against the Jets.

Derek Carr didn’t have to do much for the Raiders, completing 21 of 34 passes for 188 yards as Las Vegas got the running game going for the first time this season. Davante Adams had nine catches for 101 yards.

Jacobs scored on a 10-yard run in the second quarter and set up a field goal in the third with a 42-yard run that was his longest since his rookie season in 2019.

The Raiders finished with 212 yards rushing for their most in a game since getting 218 against the Broncos in 2016.

SURPRISE SCORE

The Raiders’ defense got into the scoring mode for a change when Duron Harmon forced Gordon’s fumble and Robertson took it to the end zone.

It was the first TD by the Raiders’ defense or special teams since Erik Harris had a pick-6 against the Chargers on Nov. 7, 2019. The 43 regular season games without one was the second longest of the Super Bowl era, trailing only a 49-game streak by the Browns from 1979-82.

It was the Raiders’ first fumble return for a TD since Keith McGill did it in the 2014 finale against Denver.

NOT SO SPECIAL

Both teams had their issues on special teams with Tyron Johnson botching a punt return that backed the Raiders up near their goal line in the first quarter.

Las Vegas also set up Denver with good field position when a surprise onside kick failed.

Both teams also missed extra points in the second quarter with Daniel Carlson missing his first kick of any kind this season for the Raiders and Denver’s Brandon McManus missing his second in the past two seasons.

INJURIES

Broncos: S P.J. Locke left the game with a concussion on the opening kick. … RB Javonte Williams left with a knee injury on the first play of the second half and didn’t return.

Raiders: LB Denzel Perryman left with a concussion in the first first half.

UP NEXT

Broncos: Host Indianapolis on Thursday night.

Raiders: Visit Kansas City on Monday, Oct. 10.

Ryan Tannehill threw for 264 yards and a touchdown and ran for another score and the Tennessee Titans never trailed Sunday, holding off the Las Vegas Raiders 24-22 for their first victory this season.

Derrick Henry also ran for 85 yards and a touchdown. Henry also added 58 yards more receiving as the Titans (1-2) avoided their worst start since 2009 when they lost the first six games that season.

The Raiders (0-3) are off to their worst start since 2018. A week after blowing a 20-point lead in losing to Arizona in overtime, the Raiders had every chance to get back in this game in the second half as they blanked Tennessee after halftime.

Two-time All-Pro safety Kevin Byard celebrated his 100th regular-season game by picking off a Derek Carr pass in the end zone with 9:22 left.

Kristian Fulton broke up a pass to Raiders receiver Mack Collins in the end zone with 3:33 left.

Trailing 24-16, the Raiders converted a fourth-and-15 and a fourth-and-10 to keep their final drive alive. Carr then hit Mack Hollins with a 9-yard TD pass on fourth-and-goal from the Titans 9. But Carr’s 2-point conversion pass to tie the game was broken up by linebacker Dylan Cole.

Austin Hooper then recovered the onside kick for Tennessee, which knelt down for the win.

Carr was 26 of 44 for 303 yards and two touchdowns. Hollins finished with eight catches for 158 yards, and five-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Davante Adams was held to five catches and 36 yards with a TD.

Coach Mike Vrabel said the Titans would get back to their bread and butter on offense. They made sure their two-time NFL rushing champ touched the ball six times on a 12-play drive to open the game. Henry ran four times for 16 yards, including 19 on back-to-back carries. He also had two catches for 26 yards.

The Titans also got the ball to some of their other top players. As a result, they scored touchdowns on each of their first three possessions with drives of at least 75 yards for just the third time since 2000 and led 24-10 at halftime.

It also was the first time the Raiders allowed three straight such TDs since a 44-7 loss to the New York Giants on Oct. 11, 2009.

The Raiders tried switching gears in the third quarter. But they had to settle for a second field goal by Daniel Carlson, this a 32-yarder after using up 8:03 of the third. Even after safety Duron Harmon picked off the pass and returned it 11 yards to the Titans 31, the Raiders wound up punting.

A holding call on right tackle Jermaine Eluemunor wiped out a 29-yard pass by Carr to Darren Waller. Adams couldn’t get both feet down on a catch, then they were flagged for delay backing them up even more. Carr’s pass to Brandon Bolden was stopped for a 2-yard loss.

INJURIES

Raiders cornerback Rock Ya-Sin went down on Tannehill’s 41-yard pass to Robert Woods that set up Henry’s first TD. Ya-Sin returned quickly, but went down again in the fourth quarter. Raiders cornerback Nate Hobbs was evaluated for a concussion.

Titans linebacker Zach Cunningham, who was on the injury report with an injured knee, went straight to the locker room with an injured elbow in the third quarter. Titans cornerback Kristian Fulton went down with 1:22 left.

UP NEXT

Raiders return home to host Denver on Sunday.

Titans visit Indianapolis on Sunday.

Justin Herbert threw for 279 yards and three touchdowns, Khalil Mack had three sacks in his Chargers debut and Los Angeles defeated Las Vegas 24-19 on Sunday, spoiling Josh McDaniels’ first game as the Raiders’ coach.

The game was a rematch of last season’s finale, which Las Vegas won on a field goal in the final seconds of overtime to knock the Chargers out of a playoff spot.

Herbert completed 26 of 34 passes and had a 129.4 passer rating despite Keenan Allen leaving with a hamstring injury in the first half and Mike Williams not having a catch until the fourth quarter.

Derek Carr was 22 of 37 for 295 yards and two touchdowns but was picked off three times. He connected 10 times with former Fresno State teammate Davante Adams, who was acquired from Green Bay in the offseason. Adams had 141 receiving yards, including a 2-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter.

All three of Herbert’s TDs went to players added during the offseason. Fullback Zander Horvath, a seventh-round pick, and DeAndre Carter scored in the second quarter to give the Chargers a 17-3 lead at halftime.

Gerald Everett had an 18-yard TD reception midway through the third quarter where he dragged Raiders safety Roderic Teamer the final 3 yards into the end zone to make it 24-10.

Carter and Everett each had three catches. Carter had 64 yards and Everett 54.

Los Angeles has won its last four openers.

The Chargers’ defense also benefited from its new additions. Besides Mack’s standout performance, Bryce Callahan jumped a route on a ball intended for Darren Waller for an interception in the fourth quarter.

It was the second time in his nine-year career Carr was picked off three times and the first since the 2018 opener against the Los Angeles Rams.

TARGETED EARLY

Adams was targeted five times on the Raiders’ opening drive and had three receptions for 54 yards. According to Sportradar, he is the third player since at least 2009 to be targeted at least five times on the opening drive of the season.

The drive ended with Daniel Carlson’s 23-yard field goal to tie it at 3.

INJURIES

Raiders: CB Anthony Averett suffered a thumb injury in the first half and did not return. … S Tre’von Moehrig (hip) was injured in the third quarter and did not return. Bolden (hamstring) and WR DJ Turner (ankle) suffered second-half injuries.

Chargers: Allen had four receptions for 66 yards before his injury. He had a 42-yard catch on the second-quarter drive that ended with Horvath’s 1-yard TD catch that gave the Chargers a 7-3 lead.

UP NEXT

Raiders: Host the Chicago Bears next Sunday.

Chargers: At Kansas City on Thursday night.

The Las Vegas Raiders are signing tight end Darren Waller to a three-year contract extension worth $51 million in new money, his agent Drew Rosenhaus told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

The Raiders and Waller have been discussing a contract extension throughout the offseason, and talks were progressing, ProFootballTalk’s Mike Florio reported on Thursday.

The new deal locks up the 29-year-old through the 2026 season, making him one of the highest-paid tight ends in the league.

The Baltimore Ravens selected Waller in the sixth round back in the 2015 NFL Draft. The team waived and signed him to the practice squad in 2018 after he served a season-long suspension in 2017 for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.

Las Vegas signed Waller off the Ravens’ practice squad in November 2018. He had seven catches for 70 yards in Week 1 of 2019, solidifying his spot as the Raiders’ starting tight end. He finished the campaign with 90 catches for 1,145 yards and three touchdowns.

Last season, Waller battled injuries and he only started 11 games, but he still put up 665 yards on 55 receptions.

Waller sat out of training camp with a hamstring injury, but he will start for the Raiders in their season opener against the Los Angeles Chargers.

Derek Carr wanted nothing more than to reunite with former college teammate Davante Adams, and he apparently wasn’t worried about coming on too strong in his attempts to recruit the receiver to the Las Vegas Raiders.

Carr told ESPN’s Tim Keown that he called Adams right after the Raiders lost in the wild-card round in January.

“Oh, man,” Carr said, “I was egregious.”

The quarterback said he told the then-Green Bay Packers star, “Hey, whenever you’re ready, I’m ready. Let’s figure this thing out.”

After the Packers followed the Raiders out of the postseason in the divisional round with an upset loss to the San Francisco 49ers, Carr resumed his recruitment of Adams.

“I’m not going to lie,” Carr said. “I texted him the next day. I couldn’t help myself.

The NFL has no rules prohibiting player-to-player recruitment.

Carr continued to pursue his fellow Fresno State alum over golf and during offseason throwing sessions. And his persistence worked, with the Raiders acquiring Adams for a first- and a second-round pick from the Packers in March.

The star pass-catcher signed a five-year, $141.25-million contract with Las Vegas that briefly topped the receiver market. Tyreek Hill, who switched teams in one of the other blockbuster trades of the offseason, quickly eclipsed Adams after his move to the Miami Dolphins.

Carr also committed his future to the Raiders in April, inking a three-year extension worth $121.5 million.

The Chicago Bears claimed former Las Vegas Raiders offensive lineman Alex Leatherwood off waivers, according to ESPN’s Field Yates.

The Raiders parted ways with Leatherwood on Tuesday after reportedly failing to find a trade partner. The 17th overall pick in the 2021 draft failed to impress as a rookie guard and struggled massively at right tackle – his natural position – during the 2022 preseason.

Chicago will take on the remaining three years and fully guaranteed $5.9 million of Leatherwood’s contract, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. The Bears also gain the right to the lineman’s fifth-year option.

Riley Reiff is tabbed as Chicago’s starting right tackle while Teven Jenkins appears to be penciled in as the starting right guard. Jenkins was the subject of trade rumors earlier this offseason.

The Bears’ offensive line allowed 58 sacks last season, with Justin Fields on the receiving end of 36 of them.

In addition to Leatherwood, the Bears also claimed defensive tackle Armon Watts, defensive back Josh Blackwell, defensive end Kingsley Jonathan, linebacker Sterling Weatherford, and tight end Trevon Wesco off waivers. Chicago’s six claims were the most of any team, per Yates.

The Las Vegas Raiders waived 2021 first-round offensive lineman Alex Leatherwood on Tuesday.

The Raiders tried to trade Leatherwood, who was a surprising selection at No. 17 overall, around the entire league but received no offers, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

Las Vegas will take dead-money hits of $7.86 million in 2022 and $3.91 million in 2023 by releasing Leatherwood post-June 1, according to Spotrac.

The former Alabama standout struggled as a rookie, with the Raiders forced to shift him inside to guard from right tackle following a poor first four starts.

Although Leatherwood was given the chance to reclaim his natural position by new Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler, he quickly fell down the depth chart.

Las Vegas’ new regime further moved on from the Mike Mayock-Jon Gruden era by trading 2019 second-round cornerback Trayvon Mullen to the Arizona Cardinals on Tuesday.

The team also released veteran wide receiver Keelan Cole.

The Las Vegas Raiders are trading cornerback Trayvon Mullen to the Arizona Cardinals, his agent Kevin Conner told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

The Cardinals are sending a 2023 conditional seventh-round pick back to the Raiders that could become a sixth-round selection if Mullen is active for 10 games, Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer reports.

The AFC West club took Mullen in the second round of the 2019 NFL Draft. He started 10 games and appeared in all 16 in his rookie year. The six-foot-two, 200-pound defensive back recorded 64 tackles, 14 passes defended, and two interceptions while starting all 16 contests in 2020.

Multiple injuries limited Mullens to just five games last campaign, causing him to miss portions of offseason activities as well as training camp.

The Clemson product is entering the final year of his rookie contract and could become a free agent after the season.

Arizona bolsters a secondary that currently features Antonio HamiltonMarco Wilson, and Byron Murphy.

Meanwhile, the Raiders have been active in shuffling their roster ahead of Tuesday’s roster deadline, placing 2021 first-round pick Alex Leatherwood on waivers.

Quarterback Jarrett Stidham led the Raiders on a touchdown drive on the team’s first possession and Las Vegas defeated the Miami Dolphins 15-13 in Saturday’s preseason game.

Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa played in just two series in his preseason debut.

It was the first look at Tagovailoa in the Dolphins’ new system after the team brought in former 49ers offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel as the new head coach. Playing with most of his starters, Tagovailoa completed 6 of 8 passes for 58 yards.

Stidham completed 7 of 10 passes for 80 yards and was sacked once.

The Raiders’ touchdown came from a 12-play, 75-yard drive, which included passes of 14, 15 and 18 yards, capped by a 2-yard touchdown run by running back Zamir White, who could be the Raiders’ No. 1 option to back up starter Josh Jacobs. Jacobs did not play.

Tagovailoa did not lead a touchdown drive, but he connected with tight end Durham Smythe for a 10-yard gain on his first throw of the game and found running back Chase Edmonds for a 17-yard gain on the next play. The Dolphins’ offense looked unsettled on the drive, however, and was forced to punt.

Edmonds, acquired in the offseason, showed how important he could be in the Dolphins’ offense this season. He caught two passes on two targets for 21 yards and had just 3 rushing yards on three carries, but in his most impressive play, he caught a short pass from Tagovailoa and shed a Raiders defender to convert on third down.

Tagovailoa looked comfortable and had the time he needed to make his throws, but Miami got little production in the run game with its starters on the field. The Dolphins’ most productive runner was backup Salvon Ahmed, who finished with 20 yards and five carries.

Veteran quarterback Teddy Bridgewater replaced Tagovailoa. On his first drive, he was penalized for intentional grounding in the end zone, resulting in a safety.

Bridgewater also made some impressive throws, including a 26-yard completion to rookie receiver Erik Ezukanma.

Dolphins rookie quarterback Skylar Thompson, who impressed in his NFL debut last week, had another solid outing, throwing for more than 100 yards, including Miami’s only touchdown — a 19-yard connection with rookie running back ZaQuandre White in the fourth quarter.

Nick Mullens replaced Stidham and was 6 of 9 for 39 yards.

THIN AT CORNERBACK

Dolphins cornerback Nik Needham left the game in the first half after appearing to injure his left hand making a tackle. In last week’s preseason opener against Tampa Bay, backup cornerback Trill Williams suffered a season-ending ACL injury, and the Dolphins to signed Mackensie Alexander earlier this week.

INACTIVES

Dolphins: Receiver Jaylen Waddle did not play, as he is nursing a minor undisclosed injury. Waddle was held out of practice this week out of precaution, though McDaniel said he expects Waddle to return during training camp. Also inactive were safety Eric Rowe, cornerback Xavien Howard, tight end Tanner Conner and offensive linemen Terron Armstead and Greg Little.

Raiders: A handful of the Raiders’ starters did not play, including quarterback Derek Carr, wide receiver Davante Adams and Hunter Renfrow, running back Josh Jacobs and defensive ends Chandler Jones and Maxx Crosby.

UP NEXT

Raiders: Close out the preseason at home next Friday against the New England Patriots.

Dolphins: Face the Philadelphia Eagles next Saturday in their preseason finale.

Dana White says Tom Brady nearly landed in Las Vegas during his free agency journey in 2020.

The UFC president claimed Saturday that former Raiders coach Jon Gruden called off a deal that would have seen both Brady and longtime tight end Rob Gronkowski join the silver and black.

White said he worked on getting Brady and Gronk to come to the Raiders. “It was almost a done deal, and at the last minute, Gruden blew the deal up and said he ‘didn’t want them,'” White said during the “UFC 278 with The Gronks” show.

White added that Brady was even looking at houses in the area before Gruden squashed the plan.

Last summer, Brady famously had strong words for a supposedly interested team that backed out at the last minute, saying, “There was a story in free agency, one of the teams, they were interested, and all of a sudden, they weren’t interested at the very end. I was sitting there thinking, ‘You’re sticking with that motherfucker? Are you serious?'”

The future Hall of Famer ended up choosing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who eventually also acquired Gronkowski from the New England Patriots in an April trade before the 2020 season.

Gronkowski noted on Saturday’s broadcast that he was “glad the deal fell through” with Las Vegas, and he believes it all worked out for the best.

Brady and Gronkowski went on to lead the Buccaneers to a Super Bowl LV win over the Kansas City Chiefs during their first campaign in Tampa Bay. The 45-year-old signal-caller led the league with 5,316 passing yards and 43 touchdowns.

Following a brief retirement earlier this year, Brady is back in Tampa Bay for his 23rd NFL season.