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Raiders open season with empty offensive performance

After a solid first half, the Raiders had an abysmal second half due in large part to an offense that struggled to maintain possession.

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Oakland scored less than five minutes into the game on a classic “Beastmode” run. Marshawn Lynch dragged a pile, that included most of the Rams defensive line, five yards into the end zone. The run blew Twitter up, with seemingly every other tweet asking, “So why didn’t the Seahawks run Lynch from the 1?”

However, there wouldn’t be much else for Oakland to celebrate the rest of the night.

After going into halftime with a 13-10 lead and a 224 to 189 advantage in total yardage, the Raiders offense imploded in the second half. Of their five second half drives only one lasted longer than two minutes (2:11) and none amounted to more than 35 yards.

The lack of lengthy possession put the Raiders defense in a difficult spot, yet they kept Oakland in the game. The defense held an explosive Rams offense to just two touchdowns on the day, one in the first quarter and one late in the third quarter. The bend-but-don’t-break style left Derek Carr and the offense with a legitimate shot at winning the game.

Carr and company got the ball with 9:19 left in the game after a third Rams field down, facing a surmountable deficit of 23-13.

Less than two minutes into the drive Carr threw his second pick of the day at the Rams’ 32-yard line, an odd floater in the direction of Jordy Nelson that looked like it was meant for a fade route in the end zone.

With the game already in hand, Marcus Peters capped the victory with a pick-six, leaping into the end zone with his cousin Lynch’s patented backward crotch grab.

After finishing a nearly flawless first half, Carr never found any comfort in following the intermission. The Oakland quarterback completed 29 of his 40 pass attempts but just seven to his receivers — one to Amari Cooper — while also hitting Los Angeles defenders three times. In a game that saw little positive for the offense, former Rams tight end Jared Cook hauled in nine catches for a game-high 180 yards.

Lynch, who appeared unstoppable on the first drive carrying the ball four times for 19 yards, got just seven more carries for 41 yards. Rams back Todd Gurley on the other hand took his 20 totes for 108 yards feeding an offense that was actually outgained by the Raiders, 395 to 365.

Jared Goff got his third NFL season off to a solid start, passing for 233 yards and two scores on 18-of-33.

Discipline issues plagued Oakland once again as well, with 11 penalties totaling 155 yards.

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