Raiders notes: The scourge of penalties returns

October 14, 2012, 11:41 pm
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ATLANTA -- A familiar, and just as unwelcome, guest returned to roost with the Raiders in their 23-20 loss to the Falcons -- penalties.The Raiders were flagged a season-high 12 times for 110 yards on the day, while the Falcons had just two penalties for 25 yards."Obviously, penalties affected us," said Raiders coach Dennis Allen, "and we have got to tip our hats to Atlanta. They came to play and they did just enough to win the game. That was a good football team. A good challenge for us. We just came up on the short end of the stick."The Raiders, who entered the game with a combined 19 penalties for 143 yards, were actually called for 13 penalties, though a holding on right tackle Willie Smith was declined.Instant Replay: Falcons 23, Raiders 20
The Raiders were called for offensive holding seven times, with Smith getting flagged three times (with the one declined). Left tackle Jared Veldheer also had a holding as well as a false start.Call it the John Abraham Effect. Abraham had three sacks for 28 yards.Falcons coach Mike Smith, on the Raiders' effort: "We're very fortunate guys, and my hat's off to the Oakland Raiders football team and their coaching staff. They did a great job in having their guys prepared. They were humming today."After not having a single interception in four games, the Raiders picked off Matt Ryan three times in the first half.Joselio Hanson, Michael Huff and Tyvon Branch had the picks."We know when they come, they come in bunches," Huff said.With 104 yards receiving, on five catches, Denarius Moore became the Raiders' first 100-yard receiver this season."The game is never over until the clock strikes zero and you have to fight until the end," Moore said. "If you haven't noticed, it seems that every time we lose, we come back twice as hard."RELATED: Palmer: 'I let the team down; I let our fans down'
Carson Palmer acknowledged the chemistry between him and Moore has been rekindled."It's time," he said.Darren McFadden averaged just 2.6 yards per carry on 27 attempts, with a long run of 14 yards.Mike Goodson usher for 59 yards on four carries, including a 43-yard burst.And according to Goodson, it was all behind the zone-blocking scheme."Same scheme," he said.So why the positive results for him?"Probably just execution," he said.A pair of decisions that perhaps haunted the Raiders -- Allen's decision to punt, rather than attempt a 5758-yard field goal in the first quarter, despite Sebastian Janikowski hitting from 64 yards in warmups and nailing a 52-yarder later in the quarter (though, he has been on the injury report with a groin issue). And, as seemingly always, going into a prevent defense with 40 seconds to play that allowed the Falcons to move into range for Matt Bryant's game-winning 55-yard field goal. Tony Gonzalez had catches of 10 and 13 yards in the middle of the field during the drive.
The last time the Raiders won a game in the Eastern Time Zone was in Week 13 of the 2009 season, at Pittsburgh in the Bruce Gradkowski game. The Raiders are 0-7 in such games since that day. And since the 2002 Super Bowl season, they are 5-23 in the Eastern Time Zone. Also, the Raiders have lost 10 straight post-bye week games.