The Oakland Raiders looked to build on their bye week as they went into Mexico City to host the New England Patriots in what was dubbed a “home” game for Jack Del Rio and the Raiders.
Derek Carr and the offense got the first crack at getting on to the scoreboard. Offensive coordinator Todd Downing looked to get the rushing attack going, handing the ball off four out of the first 5 plays. Unfortunately, the drive would stall when wide receiver Seth Roberts dropped Carr’s third-down pass, giving future Hall of Famer Tom Brady the ball.
Brady wasted no time, going 9-for-9 on the opening drive for 61 yards, including finding running back Dion Lewis for a 15-yard touchdown reception. Brady’s perfection carried into the Patriots’ second drive, as he completed his first 12 pass attempts to tie his career-best start to a regular season game. His perfection would come to an end when he tested Sean Smith deep on 3rd and 5, forcing the Patriots’ first punt of the game.
Carr was able to find some success on his second drive. finding tight end Jared Cook for a 26-yard gain but that’s about all they would get as they’d be forced to punt again.
Wasting no time, Brady took advantage of the extra possession by finding Brandin Cooks for a 52-yard pass on the first play of the ensuing drive, beating double coverage. The Raiders defense forced a 3rd and 11, but Brady went to reliable tight end Rob Gronkowski for the first down and goal on the five-yard line. The Raiders defense would force another third down, but Brady would buy time and find Danny Amendola for the 14-0 lead.
Carr and the Raiders finally got the ball rolling on the ensuing drive, as the quarterback found Roberts at the five-yard line and would have given the Silver & Black a good chance to make the game a one-touchdown deficit. Instead, Roberts looked to extend his arm for extra yards and fumbled the ball.
To little surprise, Brady marched down the field in just five plays as kicker Stephen Gostkowski nailed a 62-yard field goal to extend the Patriots lead to 17-0 heading into halftime.
Needing extra men at cornerback with David Amerson and rookie Gareon Conley, head coach Jack Del Rio converted safety Obi Melifonwu to play the position. Melifonwu got “welcomed to the NFL” on Brady’s first drive of the second half with speedster Cooks beat him deep for a 64-yard touchdown to extend the Patriots lead to 24-0.
Following two more Patriots field goals to make the score 30-0, the Raiders finally got on the scoreboard in the fourth quarter when Carr found Amari Cooper for a nine-yard touchdown. A two-point completion to Michael Crabtree would make it 30-8 with 12 minutes remaining in the game.
With the game out of reach, it was only a matter of time before the Raiders fell by a final score of 33-8, dropping to 4-6 on the season.
The Raiders will return to Oakland to take the Denver Broncos next week, part of a two-week home stretch as they look to get back on track.