The Raiders reportedly gave out Game Balls to at least three of their players, who they felt were the biggest contributors to their 13-10 victory over the Chiefs. What's significant here is that two of the three are kickers, and the other had been written off by some as a "bust". These three players were instrumental in turning an ugly Oakland performance into a much-needed win, putting the Raiders at 1-1 entering this weekend's game with the Denver Broncos.
On Sunday, Shane Lechler showed why he's the highest paid punter ever. Shane had to do his job... a lot. Shane punted the ball 7 times, including an astonishing 70-yard punt. Overall, Lechler's average over the seven punts was 56.9 yards. Shane was able to force KC deep into their own territory on possessions, which was a key to the Raiders' victory.
One of the Raiders who benefitted from Lechler's deep punts was Michael Huff. When the Chiefs did manage to get momentum going, Huff was there to kill it. He intercepted a pass on a key KC drive, and then intercepted one more late in the game. Huff's interceptions stopped any progress the Chiefs made, and helped give the Raiders additional chances to put points on the board. Huff is now tied for the league-lead in interceptions this year, with three.
Continuing the trend of chain reactions, one of the players who benefitted from a Michael Huff interception was the Raiders' all-time leading scorer, Sebastian Janikowski. Sea Bass kicked field goals of 54 and 48 yards, no easy feat anytime, let alone in a hostile stadium like Arrowhead. Janikowski's long field goals helped the Raiders stay competitive until JaMarcus led a 4th quarter touchdown drive for the win.
Mike Mitchell made a huge heads-up play, recovering a muffed punt return by Javon Walker. If the Chiefs would have recovered this, it would have almost assuredly led to points for KC.
Greg Ellis had two sacks in the game, giving him 3 total on the year. For all of the press Richard Seymour has had, Greg Ellis was the other big name signing on the defensive line, and he's proving to be a valuable asset as well.
I would love to see JaMarcus, McFadden, Michael Bush, or Louis Murphy on here next week! Let's hope for an offense that's determined to prove themselves at home against Denver.