Comeback kids: Mack, Carr lead Raiders to 38-24 win vs Bills
Buffalo Bills running back LeSean McCoy (25) runs in front of Oakland Raiders defensive end Khalil Mack during the first half of an NFL football game in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Dec. 4, 2016. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) In a dizzying 15-minute stretch of the second half, Derek Carr and the Oakland Raiders took a big step toward ending their long playoff drought with a comeback that extend Buffalo's stretch of futility yet another season.
Carr threw two touchdown passes to help Oakland rally from 15 points down with four straight touchdowns that gave the Raiders their sixth straight win, 38-24 over the Bills on Sunday.
The Raiders (10-2) scored 29 points in a span of 15:27 to climb out of a 24-9 hole, while the Bills went three-and-out on three straight possessions and then threw an interception by Tyrod Taylor that was forced by Khalil Mack.
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Oakland outgained Buffalo 212-8 during that stretch behind its two big young stars Mack and Carr. The team's top two picks in the 2014 draft have the Raiders positioned to make the playoffs for the first time since 2002.
''We feed of each other, that's for sure,'' Carr said. ''You can always tell when someone makes a play, the stadium gets going, the momentum starts swinging. It's a great thing. I say it all the time, but I'm glad they took him first. I'm glad he's on my team. I'm glad we can help lead this team together, it's really fun.''
The Bills' playoff drought is the only active one longer than Oakland's. Buffalo (6-4) hasn't been to the postseason since 1999 and could have used a road win over a top team to strengthen its cause.
Instead, Buffalo is now two games behind Denver for the final wild-card spot in the AFC with only four games remaining.
''It's pretty obvious we have to win the rest of them to even have a chance, so we'll see what happens,'' coach Rex Ryan said. ''Thank goodness we have the next three at home. We have to win every one of them and we understand that.''
Here are some other takeaways:
GIVE IT AWAY: The Bills have been on a record pace protecting the ball before committing two key turnovers in the second half. After taking over at their own 4 midway through the fourth quarter trailing by six, Taylor was hit by Mack on the first play, leading to an interception by Nate Allen . Mack then sealed the game with a sack and fumble recovery with Buffalo driving late that was Buffalo's eighth turnover of the season.
''I just felt like this is a game that we had in our hands that we let slip away,'' running back LeSean McCoy said. ''People will look at the scoreboard on their phone and they'll think, `Wow. The Bills are the Bills. They lost.' The game was closer than that. The game was in our hands, we just lost it.''
DANCING PUNTER: Raiders punter Marquette King took his dancing routine a step too far . King, who likes to show off following successful punts, celebrated after drawing a roughing the kicker penalty in the fourth quarter. He picked up the flag, did a few steps and tossed it to the ground, drawing his own personal foul for unsportsmanlike conduct.
''It's definitely a teachable moment,'' coach Jack Del Rio said. ''He's not mean-spirited in what he's doing. He's having fun. He enjoys himself. He had the Pee Wee Herman out there today. I saw that. I got a giggle. He's enjoying himself. Now, right there, he just didn't realize you can't do that. He was like, `Really? I couldn't do that? Oh man. I'm sorry. I'm sorry, Mr. Ref.'”
QUOTABLE: ''Reminds me a little bit of a guy I played against named Barry Sanders. Just because he makes so many people miss. He has that ability to kind of hover a little bit and then accelerate. Not a lot of guys can do that.'' – Del Rio on McCoy, who ran for 130 yards and added 61 more receiving.
WHAT'S NEXT: The Raiders have a quick turnaround before a division showdown at Kansas City on Thursday night. The Chiefs trail Oakland by one game in the division, but already beat the Raiders once this season and can control the tiebreaker with another win. The Bills host Pittsburgh on Sunday.
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