On October 24th, 2010, at Invesco Field, in Denver, Colorado the site of a showdown between bitter rivals. The Oakland Raiders were coming off a disastrous loss to the (0-5) San Francisco 49ers. The Broncos, weren’t faring a whole lot better either, holding at (2-4) having fallen to the Jets the week before.
At the time, the Broncos might have thought that there wasn’t a better way to bounce back than playing against the Raiders. However, the Broncos were in for a rude awakening and were quickly brought back to earth. As the late Stuart Scott said, â€œThe Raiders have been the punchline for years, but today they decided to punch back.”
Raiders: Fresh out the Gate
The beatdown started almost immediately, with the first drive being a preview of things to come. On a third and 10 from the 31-yard line, quarterback Jason Campbell broke out of the pocket and picked up 15 yards for a first down. And then, the onslaught had been unleashed. First and 10, from Denver’s 43-yard line, a play action pass to tight end Zach Miller, who slipped across the field wide open. Miller, turned, and strolled into the endzone with 10:44 left in the first.
The Raiders were up 7-0. It was Denver’s ball, quarterback Kyle Orton, threw a pass and cornerback Chris Johnson intercepted it, taking it to the house. Â 14-0 Raiders, with 10:36 to go in the first quarter. The crowd was stunned, it was silent. The Raider’s in-home audience was going crazy, but was also looking around trying to gasp the surreal moment. It was real, and it was just the beginning.
During the nextÂ BroncosÂ drive, wide receiver Demaryius Thomas took a wide receiver reverse from backup quarterback Tim Tebow, and fumbled after safety Michael Huff hit him. The Raiders recovered the ball at the Broncos’ 21-yard line.Â
With 8:59 left to go in the first quarter,Â running back Darren McFadden walked through a big hole and into theÂ end zone,Â increasing the lead to 21-0. Pizza deliveries hadn’t arrived at many households and the game was already a blowout.Â
Give Them Some More
The Broncos received the kickoff and were droving into Raiders territory until they turning the ball over on downs. Three plays later, once again, the Raiders were inside the Broncos 10. This time, they couldn’t finish the drive, settling for a field goal. After another Broncos drive started at their 20-yard line, and ended with a three and out. The beatdown continued as the quarter ended. As the second began, they were 19 yards away from pay dirt with 14:44 to go.
On third and goal from the 19, McFadden took a screen pass and ran through defensive back Renaldo Hill on his way to a touchdown, with 14:36 left in the second quarter. It was 31-0 on the scoreboard, the Broncos state of shock was even greater, as Raider Nation celebrated.
After the drive stalled the Raiders punted the ball, but would quickly take it back. On second and eight from the Broncos 16-yard line, Orton scrambled towards the marker. Raiders safety Mike Mitchell, closed on him, causing a fumble with a perfectly placed peanut punch. Fellow safety Tyvon Branch picked it up and the Raiders were in the red zone again. McFadden glided through on second and goal, and the Raiders were up an impressive 38-0 with 7:58 left in the second quarter.
The Pummeling Continues
Finally the Broncos scored, right before halftime. Coming out of the break, the Broncos scored and doubt began to creep in to Raider Nation. Would it be a case of “Raiders being the Raiders,” with 13:34 left in the third, the score was 38-14.
Responding quickly, the Raiders were in the familiar territory of the red zone. From the 1-yard line, fullback Marcel Reece just ran through the defense. With 7:33 left in the third, the score was 45-14.
Running Up The Score
McFadden, galloped through the defense for a 57-yard touchdown run, with 5:28 left in the third, the score was 52-14.
A common theme from this particular game was the ease with which the Raiders were able to move the football. Finding themselves knocking on the door again, running back Michael Bush ran it in from the one yard line bringing the score to a jaw dropping 59-14.
Rarely, in the last 20 plus years, have the Raiders been in position to call off the dogs. The fourth quarter was a scoreless quarter, but the game had long since been decided.
This game started a 3-game winning streak for the Raiders in which they outscored the opposition 115-37. A run which teased fans into thinking playoffs. Sadly, the season fizzled and the Raiders had six more years of waiting for a postseason appearance.Â Offering fans a glimmer of hope through the horrid stench of a losing campaign. It was also their third straight win in Denver, and a day of elation for Raider Nation even if it did not parlay into a playoff appearance.
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