OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Minutes after throwing the winning touchdown, Derek Carr handed Jack Del Rio the game ball for his first win as head coach for the Oakland Raiders.
Del Rio then handed another back to Carr for leading the comeback.
A week after the Del Rio era started with a dud, the Raiders bounced back behind the quarterback they believe will lead the franchise to a turnaround.
Carr threw a 12-yard touchdown pass to Seth Roberts with 26 seconds left to cap the most productive day of his young career and lead the Oakland Raiders to a 37-33 victory over Baltimore on Sunday.
”The head coach and the quarterback are the only two guys in the organization that are tied directly to wins and losses,” Del Rio said. ”To see our young quarterback take our football team down there at the end, that was special.”
Carr bounced back from a critical late interception that gave the Ravens the lead to go 7 for 9 for 65 yards on the winning drive. He threw for a career-high 351 yards and three touchdowns a week after being knocked out of a season-opening loss with an injured throwing hand.
Joe Flacco threw for 384 yards and two scores but just missed an open Steve Smith Sr. in the end zone to force Baltimore to settle for a field goal before Oakland’s winning drive. Flacco then threw a late interception that sealed it and sent the Ravens to their first 0-2 start since 2005.
”Right now we’re not playing good enough as a team to win football games,” Flacco said. ”That’s what happens, you lose games.”
Here are some other takeaways from Oakland’s win:
DYNAMIC DUO: The biggest additions the Raiders made in the offseason were signing receiver Michael Crabtree and drafting receiver Amari Cooper fourth overall to give Carr the playmakers he lacked last season as a rookie. They both delivered on Sunday with Crabtree catching nine passes for 111 yards and a touchdown and Cooper getting seven for 109 yards and a score. It marked the first time since the 2011 season finale that Oakland had a pair of 100-yard receivers in the same game.
DISAPPERING DEFENSE: With Terrell Suggs out for the season with a torn Achilles’ tendon, the Ravens played their first game in 17 seasons without either Suggs, Ray Lewis or Ed Reed anchoring the defense. The results were poor as the Raiders gained 448 yards – more than twice what Baltimore allowed to Peyton Manning and the Broncos in a 19-13 loss last week – and easily moved down the field on the winning drive.
FLAG DAY: The teams combined for 26 penalties with Oakland’s 16 ranking as the most for the team since having 16 in the 2005 season opener at New England. The Ravens had 10, including two costly ones on the winning drive. Timmy Jernigan committed a personal foul and Will Hill III was called for holding to negate what would have been a game-sealing interception.
”I thought it was a great play by Will Hill, he had position and made it one of those great NFL football plays,” coach John Harbaugh said. ”I thought we had the game won there.”
SENSATIONAL SMITH: Steve Smith Sr. had 10 catches for 150 yards and a touchdown. It was the first time he reached those numbers in 10 years and just the third time a player 36 or older had at least 10 catches, 150 yards and a score in a single game. Terrell Owens did it in 2010 and Jerry Rice in 1998. But it was a play Smith didn’t make that was most memorable. He was unable to get both feet inbounds on Flacco’s off-target pass late in the fourth quarter, forcing the Ravens to settle for a tiebreaking field goal.
WOODSON THE WARRIOR: A week after leaving a game with a dislocated shoulder, 38-year-old Charles Woodson started and played the entire game. He had four tackles and was in inspiration to his teammates.
”I don’t ever plan on missing a down,” he said. ”I don’t want to sit out. The name of the game is availability. … I was able to go out there and do what I needed to do.”
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