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Oakland at Houston

Raiders hang on in Houston day after owner Davis dies

CBSSports.com wire reports

HOUSTON -- Coach Hue Jackson sank to his knees, buried his face in his hands and finally released the emotions he had been holding back. Up in the visitor's suite at Reliant Stadium, Mark Davis wiped away tears with a paper towel and glanced to the sky.

The Oakland Raiders won the day after their maverick owner Al Davis died, beating the Houston Texans 25-20 on Sunday behind Jason Campbell's two touchdown passes.

Michael Huff intercepted Matt Schaub's pass in the end zone on the final play, and the Raiders ran to celebrate a bittersweet victory unlike any other in the storied history of the franchise.

Al, this one's for you.

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"One thing coach [Davis] always taught me was he said: 'Hue don't believe in plays, believe in players and eventually the players will make plays for you,'" Jackson said. "And that's what I did. I could just hear him saying that to me the whole time. Believe in your players and not the plays."

Stadiums around the league observed a moment of silence before the early games to honor Davis, who died at his Oakland home at age 82. His son, Mark, took his place in the owner's box, and the Raiders wore black decals on the backs of their helmets with "AL" written in silver letters.

They were statistically dominated by Houston, outgained 473-278 and held to 11 first downs and 94 yards rushing. They still managed to do the only thing that ever mattered to Davis.

They just won, baby.

"We know he's looking down on us right now," Huff said. "This win is for him. I appreciate everything he's done for this organization. He's never gone in our eyes. We'll never let him go. He's with us."

Sebastian Janikowski kicked four field goals, and Oakland hung on to improve to 3-2. The Raiders drafted Janikowski in 2000, only the third time a kicker had been taken in the first round.

"He was looking over us," Janikowski said. "I was feeling good and hitting everything in warmups."

Schaub threw for 416 yards and two touchdowns but missed star receiver Andre Johnson, who sat out with a right hamstring injury. The Texans (3-2) still had a chance to win with under a minute left, facing a third-and-23 from the Oakland 39.

Schaub scrambled and found tight end Joel Dreessen open at the 5, and Schaub spiked the ball with seven seconds left. Instead of trying to run for the winning score, Schaub lobbed a pass to Jacoby Jones, and Huff stepped in to pick it off.

"My mobility wasn't limited at the time," Schaub said, "but I'm not necessarily a guy that's going to make a whole lot of guys miss in the open field."

CBSSports.com Grades
Oakland Raiders
Oakland Raiders
Despite being outgained 473-278, the Raiders refused to lose, honoring late owner Al Davis with a gritty performance. They overcame penalties (11) and mental errors to escape with victory. Special teams kept the team in the game, allowing Jason Campbell to make just enough plays to pull it out.
Houston Texans
Houston Texans
Texans played scared after building 14-6 lead and allowed QB Matt Schaub to get battered throughout the afternoon. One week after showing heart with an inspirational win over the Steelers, they reverted to past meltdown mode across the board and gave away a win to Raiders team that had no business gaining one.
By Brandon Williams
RapidReports Correspondent

For Oakland, a messy victory never felt so good.

"This is a new beginning for this football team," Jackson said. "We don't care if they're ugly, we don't care if they're pretty. We just don't care. Our No. 1 purpose when we play is to win.

"We all had coach tied to our hearts today."

The Raiders pulled off a fake punt that Davis would've loved to keep momentum in the fourth quarter.

After the Texans stopped Darren McFadden on third-and-1, Rock Cartwright took the snap and raced 35 yards to the Houston 25. Janikowski kicked a 42-yard field goal with 10 minutes left for a 25-17 Oakland lead.

With no Johnson to target, Schaub threw six consecutive incompletions during one stretch of the final quarter.

"We've got to do a better job," receiver Kevin Walter said. "We've got to do a better job at making plays when it really counts."

Neil Rackers' 40-yard field goal cut Oakland's lead to 25-20 with 2:56 left, and Houston's defense held to give the offense one more chance.

The Raiders flew to Houston on Friday, then learned Saturday morning that Davis had died. Jackson gathered his players for an emotional meeting at their hotel.

Jackson was surprised how emotional he got after Sunday's game.

"I thought I had it all out the other day," he said. "Obviously I didn't. I know he's looking down on this team and he's with us every step of the way."

It didn't look promising after the Texans scored a touchdown on their opening series for the third straight game.

Arian Foster had a 20-yard run against the league's 29th-ranked run defense, and Walter caught a short touchdown pass with 8:15 left in the first quarter.

Oakland, meanwhile, needed a turnover and blocked punt to generate early points.

Defensive end Lamarr Houston intercepted Schaub's pass, which was deflected, setting up Janikowski for a 54-yard field goal. Oakland got the ball at the Texans 39 after Darryl Blackstock blocked Brett Hartmann's punt, but the Raiders stalled again, and Janikowski kicked a 55-yarder to make it 7-6.

Janikowski is 5 for 6 on attempts 50 yards and longer this season, including one from 63 that tied an NFL record.

Oakland was lucky to trail only 14-12 at the break after producing only four first downs in the opening half.


  • Houston DE Mario Williams and FB James Casey left with pectoral muscle injuries. Texans coach Gary Kubiak did not know the severity of either injury.
  • Raiders TE Matt Giordano left with a concussion.
  • Schaub has thrown a touchdown pass in 13 consecutive games, a franchise record.
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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Sun. Oct. 9Final
Pass: J. Campbell (15-35, 190) M. Schaub (24-51, 416)
Rush: D. McFadden (16-51) A. Foster (22-68)
Rec: D. Heyward-Bey (7-99) A. Foster (5-116)
Scoring Summary
TDKevin Walter, 5 Yd pass from Matt Schaub (Neil Rackers kick is good), 8:09. Drive: 10 plays, 65 yards in 5:08.
FGSebastian Janikowski, 54 Yd, 3:26. Drive: 4 plays, -1 yards in 1:20.
FGSebastian Janikowski, 55 Yd, 14:55. Drive: 4 plays, 2 yards in 1:53.
TDJoel Dreessen, 56 Yd pass from Matt Schaub (Neil Rackers kick is good), 11:57. Drive: 1 play, 56 yards in 0:12.
TDDarrius Heyward-Bey, 34 Yd pass from Jason Campbell (Jason Campbell 2 Pt. Conversion pass to Denarius Moore failed), 1:09. Drive: 6 plays, 75 yards in 0:51.
FGSebastian Janikowski, 50 Yd, 5:12. Drive: 11 plays, 37 yards in 5:39.
FGNeil Rackers, 54 Yd, 1:59. Drive: 7 plays, 54 yards in 3:13.
TDChaz Schilens, 18 Yd pass from Jason Campbell (Sebastian Janikowski kick is good), 14:50. Drive: 6 plays, 61 yards in 2:09.
FGSebastian Janikowski, 42 Yd, 10:00. Drive: 8 plays, 46 yards in 3:22.
FGNeil Rackers, 40 Yd, 2:56. Drive: 15 plays, 72 yards in 5:26.
Players of the Game

J. Dreessen
Rec 5
Yds 112
Avg 22.4
TD 1

D. Heyward-Bey
Rec 7
Yds 99
Avg 14.1
TD 1
J. Campbell15/3519021
D. McFadden1651020
R. Cartwright135035
M. Bush4904
J. Ford1-10-1
D. Heyward-Bey799134
J. Ford336022
C. Schilens225118
D. McFadden217013
D. Hagan113013
M. Schaub24/5141622
A. Foster2268020
C. Ogbonnaya2202
M. Schaub1000
A. Foster5116060
J. Dreessen5112156
O. Daniels789028
K. Walter581141
D. Anderson1909
J. Jones1909
Complete Player Stats
Other Games
PHI 24 Final
BUF 31
NO 30 Final
CAR 27
KC 28 Final
IND 24
CIN 30 Final
JAC 20
ARI 10 Final
MIN 34
SEA 36 Final
NYG 25
TEN 17 Final
PIT 38
TB 3 Final
SF 48
SD 29 Final
DEN 24
NYJ 21 Final
NE 30
GB 25 Final
ATL 14
CHI 13 Final
DET 24