Raiders notes: Why no field goal at end?

December 3, 2012, 3:56 pm
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OAKLAND -- As the Raiders drove into Cleveland territory late in the fourth quarter Sunday, they needed 10 points to tie the game. So with no timeouts remaining, just under a minute left in regulation and the Raiders in field-goal range for Sebastian Janikowski, why didn't Oakland just kick a field goal?After all, the Raiders were going to have to attempt an onside kick on the ensuing kickoff no matter what kind of score they got, and with time running out, they needed to score quickly.But coach Dennis Allen decided to keep going for that elusive touchdown, and while Carson Palmer did hit Brandon Myers for a 17-yard touchdown pass, there was only one second left to play. Of course, there was no time to attempt an onside kick, recover it and then take a shot at the end zone. Ballgame, Browns 20, Raiders 17.PAUL G'S INSTANT REPLAY: Browns 20, Raiders 17
So, did Allen contemplate having Janikowski attempt a field goal, especially when the Raiders were at the Browns' 24-yard line with a minute to play?"Yeah, we thought about it," Allen said. "But we were down there and I was trying to get seven points there. Unfortunately, we didn't have enough time on the clock to be able to execute an onside kick and still have an opportunity."Your eyes andor ears were not deceiving you -- receiver Denarius Moore was indeed benched in the second half after having another rough game and dropping at least two passes. As was cornerback Ron Bartell earlier in the game.In fact, Moore was targeted by Palmer eight times but only caught two passes, for 31 yards."He dropped a couple balls and we have to make plays when we get those opportunities," Allen said. "Both of those guys, they understand that. It wasn't from a lack of effort, but we've got to make the plays when we get an opportunity."Moore does not seem able to get separation from defensive backs and could still be struggling from a strained hamstring suffered in June.Allen said he expected both Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson to play Thursday night against Denver. The running backs have both been out since suffering high ankle sprains on Nov. 4."We tested them out (Sunday)," Allen said. "They just weren't quite ready to go."Omar Gaither, signed by the Raiders on Nov. 14, started at middle linebacker in place of the suspended Rolando McClain and was unofficially credited with two tackles."I made a few mistakes (with) the fact that I hadn't played in a while, period, and the fact that I was in the middle," he said. "Felt a second slow in the first half, but second half rolled around and I felt a lot more comfortable. How I played? I don't know. You'll have to ask the coaches."It was Gaither's first start since Nov. 20, 2011, when he played for Carolina.