Tuesday, October 12, 2010
AFC West Week 5 decisive moment
By Bill Williamson
The Oakland Raiders had just taken the lead, barely.
The Raiders were clinging to a 28-27 lead with hopes of ending a 13-game losing streak against the San Diego Chargers.
But Philip Rivers had the ball and he had shredded the Raiders all day (he ended up with 431 passing yards). And Rivers had 3:39 remaining in the game.
Plenty of time.
Rivers did the expected. He quickly brought his team down the field as he did in the final minutes last season in Oakland.
But unlike last season, the Chargers couldn’t close the deal.
Needing a field goal to take the lead, Rivers brought the Chargers to Oakland’s 23, but a penalty knocked them back to the 33. On second-and-20 with 58 seconds remaining, safety Michael Huff blitzed and hit Rivers, forcing him to fumble.
The ball bounced toward the Chargers, but ended up in the hands of Oakland safety Tyvon Branch, who scooped it up and returned it 64 yards for a touchdown, giving Oakland a 35-27 victory and ending a nasty skid against the Chargers.