Winning Ugly – Yeah, the Raiders Do It and Don’t Mind

Winning ugly? That was an understatment Sunday in Arrowhead Stadium, as the Raiders won their first game of the 2009 season with a 13-10 victory that won’t be on ESPN Classic anytime soon. But that’s okay. For the Raiders, they were up against it all day, as the Chiefs seemed to dominate from a numbers standpoint, and took a lead at 10-6 with 2:38 left when Matt Cassel hit Dwayne Bowe from 29 yards out.

But the Raiders had one more shot.

After they were basically null and void on offense all day, the Raiders finally showed signs of life on offense, and marched down the field, going 69 yards in 9 plays, and when Darren McFadden crossed the goal line from five yards out with 1:07 left, you could hear the Raiders breathe a sigh of relief that yes, their offense wasn’t simply going to go away quietly.

Then it was turn for the defense to make sure to close it out, and they did, as Cassel hit a 9-yard pass, but then threw an incomplete pass, and was sacked by new Raider Greg Ellis on third down. His fourth down pass fell incomplete, saving the Raiders win after a tough week in which many felt they already should have been 1-0.

Seven of the first nine Raiders drives ended in punts, and six of those seven drives ended with three and outs. They were simply awful for three plus quarters, getting just two field goals, but their defense held up and it looked like they might escape with a 6-3 win. That’s when the teams traded late scores, still giving the Raiders the win.

JaMarcus Russell wasn’t very good, but he did hit a few passes on the game-winning drive. He was just 7-for-24 for 109 yards. Michael Bush and McFadden led the way with each 35 yards on the ground. Just to show how the Raiders were dominated in the stats catagory, they were outgained 409 to 166, but hey, they got the win and that’s all that counts.

The team is now 1-1, and will have a test next week at home vs the surprising 2-0 Broncos as they play another AFC West opponent for the third straight week.

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