Recap San Diego at Oakland
Oakland, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Branden Oliver's 1-yard touchdown run put San Diego ahead, and an interception by Jason Verrett sealed the outcome in a 31-28 Chargers victory over the Oakland Raiders in an AFC West Week 6 clash.
Philip Rivers ended up with 313 yards and three TDs on 22-of-34 passing for the Chargers (5-1), winners in five straight after losing at Arizona to begin the year.
"The players made this possible. They made the plays we needed with the game on the line," noted Chargers head coach Mike McCoy.
Oliver racked up 101 yards on 26 carries, Malcom Floyd totaled 103 yards and a score on five catches, while Eddie Royal and Antonio Gates added a scoring reception apiece.
Derek Carr threw for a career-best four touchdowns and 282 yards on 18-of-34 attempts for the Raiders (0-5), who played their first game under interim head coach Tony Sparano, who took over after Dennis Allen was fired on Sept. 29.
"This group, for what they've been through here the last two weeks, came out today and played with a lot of energy," Sparano said.
The Raiders have now lost 11 consecutive games dating back to last season.
Andre Holmes clocked in with 121 yards and a pair of touchdowns on just four catches, Darren McFadden totaled 80 yards on 14 carries, with James Jones and Brice Butler adding a TD grab each in defeat.
Carr connected with Holmes for a second time less than five minutes into the fourth quarter, a 6-yard TD which provided the Raiders a 28-21 advantage.
However, the Chargers responded with a 68-yard march ending on a successful 30-yard attempt from Nick Novak which closed the gap to four.
San Diego's defense forced a three-and-out, then assumed control on their foes' 39 after a 29-yard return from Keenan Allen. It took just six plays for San Diego to regain the lead on a 1-yard run from Oliver. Novak's first extra- point try was blocked, but two defensive penalties gave Novak a second-chance chip shot which was true for a three-point margin.
A facemask penalty on the defense nullified a Carr fumble and Chargers recovery on the next play from scrimmage. After an 11-yard completion to Butler and 9-yard strike to Jones, Carr aired it out up the left sideline for Butler and Verrett came down with it instead.
"I'm feeling good. I was just trying to make a play. All we needed was a stop," Verrett said.
Rivers took a knee three times to run out the remaining time.
Oakland opened the scoring on a 77-yard pass from Carr to Holmes less than a minute into the contest, but the Chargers responded when Rivers found Royal for a 29-yard strike.
In the second quarter, Floyd's 5-yard TD catch put the visitors ahead, then Carr's ball over the middle found Jones just over the goal line for a 6-yard score and 14-14 tie roughly 4 1/2 minutes later.
Oakland had a chance to take the lead heading to halftime, but Sebastian Janikowski missed a 53-yard try wide left on the final play.
San Diego controlled the ball for the first 6:25 of the third quarter but came up empty in spite of some trickery.
Novak's 54-yard boot to end the drive was wiped out by an offensive holding penalty, then a direct snap on a fake punt resulted in an incomplete pass from Eric Weddle intended for Seyi Ajirotutu.
Oakland took over on its own 46 and on the third play of the ensuing drive, Carr found Butler over the middle and he accelerated for a 47-yard score and 21-14 lead.
A tipped pass fell into the hands of Gates in the end zone to cap San Diego's next touch for yet another deadlock heading to the final period.