What it means: The Oakland Raiders fell to 3-8 and trail the first-place Denver Broncos (8-3) by five games with five games to go. Any Denver win or any Oakland loss means the Raiders will not win the AFC West title for the 10th straight season. Oakland has lost four straight games for the first time in four years.
Bad homecoming for Palmer: It was Carson Palmer's first trip to Cincinnati since he was traded from the Bengals to Oakland in October 2011. Palmer was essentially retired before the trade was made. He made little impact Sunday. Palmer has thrown an interception in each of the past seven games -- the first time he has done that since 2004. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that some fans poured beer on Palmer when he left the field after the game. That is complete nonsense. Shame on them. Palmer was a good soldier for the Bengals and he is a quality guy, but those facts are besides the point. No one deserves to be treated that way. Despicable.
Big day for Hue Jackson: You know Hue Jackson enjoyed this. He was fired from the Raiders after one season in which he went 8-8. He is an assistant on the Bengals’ staff.
Mark Davis can’t be happy: Last week, Oakland owner Mark Davis expressed his frustrations and said he must see progress from his team. Progress was not made Sunday.
Defense falters again: The Bengals led 24-0 at halftime and ran over Oakland’s defense. Oakland has allowed 169 points in the past four games.
Tempers flare: We could see big fines levied this week. Oakland defensive linemen Lamarr Houston and Tommy Kelly and Cincinnati tackle Andrew Whitworth were all ejected after a fight erupted. The fight started when Houston sacked Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton after a play was called dead. Whitworth went after Houston, and a melee ensued. It happened a play after a strange inadvertent whistle play nullified a Bengals turnover, which appeared to be a major official’s gaffe.
Reece impressive again: Oakland fullback Marcel Reece had 74 yards rushing and he added 29 yard receiving. He has played well with starting running back Darren McFadden out for the past three games with a high ankle sprain.
What’s next: Oakland hosts the Cleveland Browns. If the Raiders lose this game, duck, just duck. It could get ugly.