Originally written on This Given Sunday  |  Last updated 11/19/14

Led by the offensive heroics of Carson Palmer throwing to Denarius Moore, plus Michael Bush on the ground, the Oakland Raiders jumped to a two-touchdown halftime lead and a defensive effort keyed by Kamerion Wimbley's four sacks and a crucial interception by Matt Giordano helped stave off a rally by Philip Rivers and the San Diego Chagers for a 24-17 Silver and Black triumph.

The game start promisingly for the Chargers, as a good punt return by Marcus Gilchrist set up a 20-yard field goal by Nick Novak to take the 3-0 lead, but the offense struggled to move the ball for the remainder of the first half.  Left tackle Marcus McNeill would leave the game with what was reported to be a "stinger" after a helmet-to-helmet collision with Aaron Curry in the first quarter, and Wimbley took advantage of backup tackle Brandyn Dombrowski to put a lot of pressure on Rivers.

The Raiders would take a 7-3 lead late in the first quarter on a two-yard score by Michael Bush, but the big play on the drive was a fantastic fingertips catch by wideout Jacoby Ford on a well-thrown ball from Palmer that picked up 41 yards.  Deep passing plays would be the mainstays of the other Raiders first half scoring drives, as Palmer hit rookie Denarius Moore, who'd been quiet after a hot start, for 46 yards to set up a Sebastian Janikowski field goal to make it 10-3, and then late in the first half, he'd hit Moore for a scoring strike, this one from 33 yards out.

The Chargers showed signs of life in the third quarter, taking the opening drive 80 yards for a score on a 30 yard pass by Rivers to rookie Vincent Brown the wideout stole away from Stanford Routt. Palmer would then re-extend the Raiders lead to 14 on his second TD pass to Moore from 26 yards, though the big play on the drive was a 55-yard screen pass to Michael Bush. Later in the quarter, Palmer would be strip-sacked by Antuan Barnes, and the Chargers turned that possession into seven points on a pass from Rivers to Jacob Hester after Mike Tolbert converted a fourth-and-one.

Through three quarters, Carson Palmer had maintained a perfect 158.3 passer rating, thanks to the big plays and a heavy dose of Michael Bush running the ball, but he'd lose that in the fourth quarter when Paul Oliver intercepted a pass after Travis LaBoy delivered a hot to Palmer while he was throwing. The Chargers wouldn't do anything that possession, but made it to Raiders territory their subsequent possession before Rivers threw deep for Vincent Jackson. Unfortunately, Jackson seemingly had no idea the ball was headed his direction and safety Matt Giordano had an easy interception.  San Diego got one more chance with a minute to play 90 yards away from tying the game, but unsurprisingly sputtered out at midfield, and the Raiders moved into first place in the division at 5-4.

Three Stars
1. QB Carson Palmer, Raiders
. 14 for 20, 299 yards, 2 TD/1 INT. When he hit a deep pass, the Raiders moved the ball down the field and got into scoring range. Moore was his most prolific target, with five catches for 123 yards and the two scores.
2. RB Michael Bush, Raiders. Thirty carries, 157 yards, a rushing touchdown, and three catches for 85 yards including the big screen pass. San Diego's defense struggled all night to contain him.
3. WR Vincent Brown, Chargers. Five catches for 97 yards and a touchdown, plus near touchdown taken away from him on replay. The rookie outshined all of his teammates.

Three Duds
1. WR Vincent Jackson, Chargers
. One catch for 22 yards in the fourth quarter, and he didn't make the tough catches Brown did. You'd never know the Raiders had injury issues at cornerback from Jackson's play. If you find out what he was looking at on Giordano's interception, please let everybody else know.
2. LT Brandyn Dombrowski, Chargers. Came in for Marcus McNeill after his injury, and struggled mightily in his attempts to protect Philip Rivers.
3. Head coach Norv Turner, Chargers. Dombrowski shouldn't have been blocking Wimbley by himself after the first couple plays showed he couldn't handle him. Calling 53 pass plays to 15 rushes when you can't protect your quarterback doesn't make a whole lot of sense. The Raiders may commit a lot of penalties, but the Chargers did not play smart or inspired football, and the head coach must bear some responsibility for that.

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