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Oakland at Miami

Pennington guides drive to winning FG as Fins win fourth straight

CBSSports.com wire reports

MIAMI -- The Miami Dolphins showed again they can beat a bad team -- barely. Next comes the biggest game yet in the franchise's revival.

Dan Carpenter nailed a 38-yard field goal with 38 seconds left to cap a 61-yard drive, and the Dolphins earned their fourth consecutive victory Sunday by defeating the woeful Oakland Raiders 17-15.

The Dolphins (6-4), who barely avoided a winless season in 2007, set up a showdown at home next Sunday against AFC East rival New England.

"This should be the first time I see our stadium sold out," linebacker Joey Porter said. "I've been here a year and a half and still haven't seen the place sold out. This matchup should definitely get us to that level."

Miami and New England trail the division-leading New York Jets by one game, but doubts remain as to whether the Dolphins belong in a playoff race. They beat injury-plagued Seattle by two points at home a week ago, and nearly blew Sunday's game after leading most of the way.

Johnnie Lee Higgins scored on a 93-yard punt return with 4:30 left to give the Raiders their first lead. Chad Pennington then moved the Dolphins down the field in 10 plays, completing a 7-yard pass on fourth-and-5 to Ted Ginn Jr. to keep the drive alive.

"It was my first fourth-and-5 with a minute or so left in the game," said Ginn, a second-year pro. "It was probably Chad's 20th. He's cool, calm and collected. He went out there and got the job done."

Oakland (2-8) lost its fourth in a row, and Tom Cable fell to 1-5 as interim coach.

"This is good for us," Cable said. "It hurts because we lost, but we're getting closer. We've just got to keep pounding away, and we'll get a break one of these days."

The Raiders generated only two field goals on offense, and scored when Jay Richardson sacked Pennington for a safety. They haven't registered an offensive touchdown in 13 quarters, and reinforcements failed to provide a spark.

Quarterback JaMarcus Russell returned after missing one game with a knee injury, and he went 15-for-22 for 156 yards, but Miami had six sacks. His last pass was a completion to the Oakland 30 before time ran out.

Teammate Darren McFadden, nursing a toe injury that has hampered him most of the season, played for the first time in four games as a reserve. He carried only three times for 13 yards, and the Raiders totaled only 70 yards on the ground.

"You can't have an offense that doesn't score points," running back Justin Fargas said. "We have to pick up our side of it."

Ginn had a 40-yard touchdown run on an end-around for the Dolphins. They ran for a season-high 222 yards, including 101 by Ronnie Brown in 16 carries.

The Raiders went 2-for-11 on third-down conversations and were outgained 382-186. Still, they nearly pulled out a victory thanks to Higgins.

The Dolphins' punt coverage unit ranks second worst in the NFL, and he found a gaping crease. The closest would-be tackler was the last line of defense, punter Brandon Fields, who slapped Higgins' heel in an unsuccessful diving attempt to prevent the score that put Oakland ahead 15-14.

"We keep putting ourselves in these dogfights," Porter said. "You don't want them to come back and bite you. When you've got a team down, you've got to figure out how to put them away. Having last-second wins is not something you want to be hoping for every time."

The Dolphins drove 93 yards on their opening possession and scored on the run by Ginn, who broke one tackle and juked past another defender. Their other touchdown drive covered 64 yards in the third period and was capped by Patrick Cobbs' 10-yard run for a 14-5 lead.

The Raiders drove 75 yards late in the first half, but with first-and-goal at the 5, they committed two penalties, lost 5 yards on a broken play and settled for a field goal and a 7-3 halftime deficit.

Sebastian Janikowski had a chance to give Oakland an 8-7 lead in the third quarter, but his 46-yard field goal attempt deflected off the right upright.

Copyright 2016 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Holder Brandon Fields helps Dan Carpenter celebrate his 38-yard go-ahead field goal.
Holder Brandon Fields helps Dan Carpenter celebrate his 38-yard go-ahead field goal. (US Presswire)


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Related Links
Sun. Nov. 16Final
OAK - Pass: J. Russell (15-22, 156), Rec: R. Curry (6-73)
MIA - Pass: C. Pennington (16-22, 174), Rush: R. Brown (16-101)
Scoring Summary
TDTed Ginn Jr., 40 Yd run (Dan Carpenter kick is good), 6:52. Drive: 9 plays, 93 yards in 5:51.
FGSebastian Janikowski 21 Yd, 1:09. Drive: 8 plays, 77 yards in 4:49.
SAFETYJay Richardson, 10:28.
TDPatrick Cobbs, 10 Yd run (Dan Carpenter kick is good), 1:57. Drive: 9 plays, 64 yards in 3:55.
FGSebastian Janikowski 37 Yd, 8:02. Drive: 10 plays, 73 yards in 4:06.
TDJohnnie Lee Higgins, 93 Yd punt return (Sebastian Janikowski kick is good), 4:30.
FGDan Carpenter 38 Yd, 0:38. Drive: 10 plays, 61 yards in 3:52.
Players of the Game

R. Brown
Rush 16
Yds 101
Avg 6.3
TD 0

R. Curry
Rec 6
Yds 73
Avg 12.2
TD 0
J. Russell15/2215600
D. McFadden0/0000
M. Tuiasosopo0/0000
J. Fargas1757015
D. McFadden31308
R. Curry673016
Z. Miller467027
T. Stewart217011
D. McFadden2102
L. Lawton1-20-2
C. Pennington16/2217400
R. Brown16101021
R. Williams1349012
T. Ginn Jr.242140
P. Cobbs323112
C. Pennington1707
T. Ginn Jr.451023
D. Bess350027
G. Camarillo234021
P. Cobbs31609
R. Brown111011
D. Martin1606
R. Williams26011
Complete Player Stats
Other Games
CLE 29 Final
BUF 27
DAL 14 Final
WAS 10
SD 10 Final
PIT 11
ARI 26 Final
SEA 20
STL 16 Final
SF 35
MIN 13 Final
TB 19
BAL 10 Final
NYG 30
NO 30 Final
KC 20
TEN 24 Final
JAC 14
HOU 27 Final
IND 33
CHI 3 Final
GB 37
PHI 13 Final
CIN 13
DET 22 Final
CAR 31
DEN 24 Final
ATL 20
NYJ 34 Final
NE 31