Patriots 31, Raiders 19: Stevan Ridley's Big Day Leads Pats To Win In Oakland

The New England Patriots head west to Oakland to take on the Raiders in an important inter-conference match-up. The Patriots are coming off a tough loss in Buffalo last week, while the Raiders are coming off a big win over the NY Jets.

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Patriots 31, Raiders 19: Tom Brady, Pats Now Tied Atop AFC East

With a 31-19 win over the Oakland Raiders, and a Buffalo Bills loss, the Patriots find themselves back in familiar territory in a tie for the lead in the AFC East.

The Raiders weren't able to challenge them much on the scoreboard, but they did manage to further expose the defensive struggles of this New England defense, especially against the pass. The normally unimpressive Jason Campbell threw for 344 yards and a touchdown; though it's worth mentioning that he also added two interceptions to his stat line.

Tom Brady countered by going for a dependable if unremarkable 226 yards, 2 touchdowns and no interceptions. Contributing to his lower numbers was the Patriot's much improved running game, with Stevan Ridley and BenJarvus Green-Ellis combining for 172 yards and two touchdowns.

The balance of their offensive attack was a breath of fresh air for Patriots fans, as their ability to run down the clock with productive rushing plays throughout the game served them well, keeping their depleted defense off the field and preventing Campbell, Darren McFadden and co. from developing momentum.

Game Recap

The Patriots led 7-3 after the first quarter, but the lead was anything but comfortable. Their first possession started with an overthrown Brady pass to Rob Gronkowski and a 10 yard penalty for offensive holding against Dan Connolly, forcing a 1st and 20 situation from their own 20 yard line. It took two major penalties from Richard Seymour to help them get down the field, including an unnecessary roughness penalty on Brady and a facemask call. The shaky drive culminated in a 15 yard touchdown pass to Brady's safety blanket Wes Welker.

The rest of the game went mostly along that same plotline: Patriots' defense didn't stop much, but the Raiders managed to commit enough penalties and make enough mistakes to keep themselves behind the eight ball, and Brady and Welker carried the offense by being spectacularly in sync just about all of the time. Supporting cast members included BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Stevan Ridley and Deion Branch who all made their way into the end zone as well.

With 11 minutes left in the game, it felt as though the Patriots were lucky to have a comfortable 31-13 lead, considering another atrocious defensive performance in which Jason Campbell had practically matched Tom Brady pass for pass, minus a Kyle Arrington end zone interception that stole some major momentum from Campbell and his offense.

But he's still just Jason Campbell, and the Patriots' defense is apparently still not bad enough to let him look like anyone else. The Raiders drove the ball down the field to the Patriot 30 yard line on 7 plays, aided largely by a careless helmet to helmet hit by Pat Chung on a defenseless receiver. But on the next play Campbell, looking for Darren McFadden on a short pass down the middle, was intercepted by none other than 2011 interception machine Vince Wilfork.

After a few unimpressive possessions from both teams, Stevan Ridley hit the open field for a 15 yard run and the Patriots ran the clock down as they forced the Raiders to make several goal line stands four attempts to rush the ball into the end zone.

In what was definitely the smartest thing to do, the Patriots defense played it safe during the Raiders final possession, knowing they already had the game won and couldn't afford any unnecessary injuries to their already depleted line up. Campbell completed a touchdown pass to Denarius Moore, but failed on a two-point conversion to end the game.

Perhaps one of the Patriots' biggest accomplishments was keeping McFadden to 75 yards rushing on 14 carries. Although they allowed 160 total rushing yards, that number is inflated by an insane 30 yard run by Jacoby Ford on his only carry of the game. If the Patriots can continue to stop the rush as well as they have, their defense might just have a chance surviving this season. 

The Patriots will take this win and no doubt "put it behind them" in their usual Belichick-ean manner, as they prepare for the first of their two highly anticipated meetings with the New York Jets next Sunday. 

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Patriots 31, Raiders 19: Jason Campbell's Six Yard TD To Denarius Moore Cuts Pats Lead To 31-19

In a seemingly meaningless drive, the Oakland Raiders have put together a late scoring drive behind quarterback Jason Campbell. After stopping the Patriots on fourth and goal, the Raiders put together a four play, 99 yard scoring drive. The drive ended in a six yard TD pass from Campbell to Denarius Moore. Because the two-point conversion failed, the Raiders were only able to tack on six points. The Patriots have this one in the bag as they lead 31-19 with seconds left in the fourth quarter.

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Patriots Vs. Raiders: Danny Woodhead Injures Left Ankle, Status Unknown

The Patriots have sustained another injury in this game, this time on offense. Running back Danny Woodhead left the game with an apparent ankle injury late in the first half.

While the team has not issued an injury announcement regarding Woodhead, rookie running back Stevan Ridley has taken Woodhead’s reps in the backfield while rookie Shane Vereen has taken Woodhead’s spot on the Patriots kickoff coverage team. Check back for more updates regarding Woodhead.

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Patriots 31, Raiders 13: Tom Brady's Four-Yard TD To Deion Branch Extends Pats Lead To 31-13

Tom Brady has been, well the Tom Brady we all love to see. With an important lesson learned from last week, the Patriots offense can’t afford to lose their rhythm late in the game. They appear to have learned their lesson, as Brady and the offense have put together an eight play, 80 yard drive that ended in a four yard touchdown pass to Deion Branch. With it, the Pats lead the Raiders, 31-13, in the fourth quarter.

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Patriots Vs. Raiders: Pats Running Game Takes Control, Lead 24-13 After Three

The first three weeks of the season, the story for the New England Patriots was their gaudy passing numbers. Today, the running game is what’s keeping the Patriots on schedule for their third win of the young season.

Thanks to the first career touchdown run by Stevan Ridley, the Patriots have a 24-13 lead after three quarters.

Ridley’s 33 yard touchdown run gave him 69 yards on just five carries (an outrageous 13.8 ypc), and helped to compensate for an inaccurate day from quarterback Tom Brady. Brady is just 15/26 for 222 yards after being below 50% passing for much of the game.

For the Raiders, their only offense in the third quarter came via a 26 yard Sebastian Janikowski field goal late in the quarter. It was the third time the Raiders offense stalled in the red zone today, marking some improvement from the maligned Patriots defense.

Wes Welker continues his tremendous start to the season with nine catches for 158 yards and a first quarter touchdown.

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Patriots 24, Raiders 13: Sebastian Janikowski's 26-Yard Field Goal Cuts New England Lead To 24-13

Sebastian Janikowski has been a pretty busy man today. After knocking in a 28-yarder earlier, Janikowski knocked in another chip shot with a 26 yard field goal late in the third quarter. The Raiders settled for a field goal after a 15 play, 74 yard drive. The Patriots still lead the Raiders, 24-13, late in the third quarter.

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Patriots 24, Raiders 10: Stevan Ridley's First Career Touchdown Gives Pats 24-10 Advantage

We all knew when Bill Belichick drafted two running backs in last year’s draft in the second round, we knew they would be utilized somehow in the New England offense. The rookie Stevan Ridley out of LSU scored his first career NFL touchdown after bursting through the Raider defense with a 33-yard run. Ridley’s long run capped a seven play, 81 yard drive by the Patriots. With it, the Patriots now lead the Raiders, 24-10, in the third quarter

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Patriots Vs. Raiders: Late Campbell INT Keeps Pats In Front 17-10 At Halftime

Tom Brady is just 8/17 for 121 yards, easily his worst first half of the season, but the defense has made some critical stops to keep the Patriots in front 17-10 at the half in Oakland against the Raiders.

Sebastian Janikowski staked the Raiders to an early lead with a 28 yard field goal, but Brady marched the Patriots 90 yards on the ensuing possession, hitting receiver Wes Welker for a 15 yard touchdown to put the Pats up 7-3.

The Raiders would answer with an impressive drive early in the second quarter, capped off by a one yard plunge by Raiders running back Michael Bush, to give them the lead back at 10-7.

Benjarvus Green-Ellis would answer for the Patriots just three minutes later when he pushed the through the pile at the goal line from yard out to regain the lead for the Pats at 14-10.

The Raiders were set to answer again, but on 2nd and goal from the Patriots six yard line, quarterback Jason Campbell threw an interception in the back of the endzone to safety Pat Chung to kill the drive. Chung was making his return from a broken hand.

The Patriots wound close out the half two minutes later with a 44 yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski.

Brady’s sub-par first half has been offset by a strong running attack which has racked up 88 yards on just 13 carries (6.8 yards per carry). Wes Welker has three catches for 60 yards a week after setting a career high with over 200 yards receiving.

For the Raiders, Jason Campbell has been very efficient despite his late interception, completing 11/15 passes for 144 yards. But, the story has been the Raiders vaunted running attack. Darren McFadden has 57 yards on eight carries, but 41 of those came on just one carry. The Pats defense has done an admirable job limiting the league’s leading rusher.

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Patriots 17, Raiders 10: Stephen Gostkowski's 44-Yard Field Goal Gives Patriots 17-10 Halftime Lead

After a Patrick Chung interception, the Patriots were able to drive into Oakland territory with very limited time. The Patriots put together an 11 play, 54 yard drive that resulted in a Stephen Gostkowski 44-yard field goal. The Patriots have the 17-10 lead, heading into halftime.

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Patriots Vs. Raiders: OLB Jerod Mayo Leaves Game With Knee Injury, Return Is Questionable

The task of stopping the Raiders on defense just got a little bit harder. Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo has left the game with assistance after sustaining an apparent knee injury. His return to this game is Questionable.

With Mayo out of the fold for at least a few plays, the Patriots will likely turn to Gary Guyton to fill Mayo’s duties as an outside linebacker. With Guyton in Mayo’s place, Tracy White will likely get looks in the sub-packages on New England’s defense. Stopping Darren McFadden just got a little bit harder.

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Patriots Vs. Raiders: DT Kyle Love Leaves Game With Ankle Injury, Return is Questionable

With Albert Haynesworth and Mike Wright already out for this game, the Patriots may have some serious depth concerns at defensive tackle. DT Kyle Love, who started for Haynesworth today, has left the game with an apparent ankle injury. He is currently listed as ‘Questionable’ for a possible return.

If Love does not return, the Patriots only have recently signed Gerard Warren and possible DE Shaun Ellis available alongside Vince Wilfork in the middle of the defensive line in their 4-3 defense. Stay tuned for more updates.

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Patriots 14, Raiders 10: BenJarvus Green-Ellis' Touchdown Puts New England On Top, 14-10

Well, that didn’t take long. After watching the Raiders produce another well executed drive, the Patriots needed just two minutes and 36 seconds to produce a six play, 64 yard scoring drive. BenJarvus Green-Ellis collected his first touchdown of the day after a one-yard run into the endzone. The Patriots lead the Raiders, 14-10, midway through the second quarter.

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Raiders 10, Patriots 7: Michael Bush's One-Yard TD Run Puts Oakland Back On Top, 10-7

The Raiders continue to look sharp on offense. Behind a 41-yard run by Darren McFadden, the Raiders have put together a six play, 88 yard scoring drive. The drive culminated in a one-yard touchdown by McFadden’s backup, Michael Bush. With it, the Raiders lead the Patriots, 10-7, early in the second quarter.

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Patriots Vs. Raiders: Brady To Welker Highlights First Quarter, Pats Lead 7-3

The game began ominously for the New England Patriots following an opening kickoff that went out of bounds and set the Raiders up at the 45 yard line. The Raiders proceeded to march down the field into the New England red zone, but the Pats D (helped by a big penalty against the Raiders) stiffened and held the home team to a 28 yard field goal.

The Patriots answered on the ensuing drive when Tom Brady took the Pats 90 yards in nine plays capped off by a 15 yard pass to Wes Welker for the Pats first touchdown of the game to give the team a 7-3 lead.

The Patriots defense did a terrific job on the vaunted running attack of the Oakland Raiders, holding the NFL’s leading rusher, Darren McFadden, to just six yards on five carries.

Offensively, the Pats have been much more balanced than during their loss to Buffalo last week. They ran the ball seven times with Stevan Ridley and Benjarvus Green-Ellis for a total of 55 yards. Brady was 3/7 for 41 yards and the touchdown to Welker.

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Patriots 7, Raiders 3: Tom Brady's 15-Yard TD Pass To Wes Welker Gives Pats 7-3 Lead

After watching the Raiders drive down the field to begin the game, Tom Brady and the New England offense took the field; looking to put up some points of their own. After an eight play, 75 yard drive to put the Patriots in the redzone, Tom Brady ended the drive with a 15-yard touchdown pass to Wes Welker. With it, the Patriots now lead the Raiders, 7-3, early in the first quarter.

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Patriots 0, Raiders 3: Sebastian Janikowski's 28-Yard Field Goal Gives Raiders Early Lead

After winning the opening coin toss, the Oakland Raiders put together a nine play, 50 yard drive that resulted in the first points of the game. The drive ultimately culminated after Raiders kicker Sebastian Janikowski drilled a chip-shot 28-yard field goal. The Raiders lead the Patriots early in the first, 3-0

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Patriots Vs. Raiders: Albert Haynesworth Highlights Patriots Inactives

The official inactives list for the New England Patriots hasn't been announced, but the team has already released a partial list of players who will not participate on Sunday afternoon in Oakland.

Albert Haynesworth will miss his second straight week with a back injury and cornerbacks Leigh Bodden (groin) and Ras-I Dowling (hip) have both been downgraded to out. Aaron Hernandez (knee), Sebastian Vollmer (back) and defensive lineman Mike Wright (concussion) will also miss Sunday's game. Dan Koppen, who broke his leg in the season opener, and Myron Pryor, who suffered a shoulder injury, will miss this game, and every other, on IR.

Haynesworth has been disappointing for the Patriots this season, totaling only two tackles in two games while battling various injuries in the preseason and start of the regular season. In his career, Haynesworth 245 tackles and 30.5 sacks in 113 games.

For more New England Patriots coverage, visit our team page and blog, Pats Pulpit.

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Patriots Vs. Raiders: TV Schedule, Time, Location, History And More

The New England Patriots head west to Oakland to take on the Raiders in an important inter-conference match-up. The Patriots are coming off a tough loss in Buffalo last week, while the Raiders are coming off a big win over the NY Jets.

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Patriots Vs. Raiders Preview: Five Things to Watch Sunday In Oakland

Being edged out by the long-woeful Buffalo Bills in week three has given Tom Brady and the Pats a lot to look ahead to and improve on for this week...and they have their work cut out for them. Here are five things to watch for in Sunday's game.

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