Streak snapped at SoFi Stadium as Raiders shocked in final seconds by Rams
Updated: Dec 9, 2022
A fourth quarter folding of epic proportions resulted in the longest win streak of the season for Las Vegas being snapped in Southern California.
Up double-digits with just over 12 minutes left in regulation, the Raiders were shocked in the final minute of the game by the Los Angeles Rams, losing 17-16, Thursday. Dec. 8 from SoFi Stadium.
“I don’t look at it as a step back,” head coach Josh McDaniels said. “We didn’t finish the game, that’s the reality. I thought we were ready to play, we competed. We got off to a decent start and then we just didn’t capitalize.
“The bottom line is until we find out how to stop losing games with mistakes that we [make] ourselves, then it makes it very difficult to win. You can’t win until you stop from losing.”
The loss brings an end to a three-game win streak by Las Vegas, dropping the team to 5-8 on the season. Four times this season the team has lost games after leading by 13 points or more, becoming the fourth team in NFL history to do so and the first since the 1998 Indianapolis Colts.
“It’s 60 minutes,” McDaniels said. “Everybody will pull to the last play, or last few plays or last drive but there’s plays in every quarter that could’ve helped us extend the lead. There’s things we could’ve done in all three phases that would’ve put us further ahead in games.”
In addition, the Raiders are now 2-6 on the road this season.
Las Vegas will now return home for a Sunday, Dec. 18 matchup from Allegiant Stadium against the New England Patriots. McDaniels spent 14 non-consecutive seasons on New England head coach Bill Belichick’s staff, winning six Super Bowls during his time there.
Kickoff is slated for 1:05 p.m. after being flexed out of the Sunday Night Football slot.
With 12:20 on the clock in the fourth quarter, Las Vegas kicker Daniel Carlson netted his third and final field goal of the night, putting the visitors up 13 points in the process.
On the ensuing drive, the Raiders found themselves in great position facing a 4th and 3. However, an offsides penalty on the Rams’ punt granted Los Angeles another fresh set of downs.
Later in the drive, defensive lineman Maxx Crosby lined up in the neutral zone on a 3rd and 4, again gifting the home team a new set of downs.
“I like to believe that we teach them the right way,” McDaniels said. “I think our guys play the right way for the most part. I don’t think we’ve been a team that’s made a bunch of unsportsmanlike fouls, late-hits, unnecessary roughness – that hasn’t been our M.O.”
That drive was later capped off by a Cam Akers touchdown run with 3:19 left in regulation, signifying the first Los Angeles touchdown of the night.
Las Vegas’ chance to respond only lasted 1:34 seconds before the team opted to punt on 4th and 1 for the second time in the second half.
“The decision to not go for it on 4th and 1 late in the game,” McDaniels said. “I thought [punter] A.J. Cole had a heck of a punt down there, put it at the two yard-line. But then penalties, a couple of big plays and they drove the ball.” Cole did his job, launching his punt 64 yards and pinning the Rams at their own two-yard line with less than two minutes to play.
From there, Los Angeles quarterback Baker Mayfield would orchestrate a 98-yard scoring drive that culminated in a 23-yard touchdown reception by receiver Van Jefferson. The extra point gave the home team its first lead of the game, at 17-16 with nine seconds left.
Prior to kickoff, Mayfield had been a member of the Rams for 40 hours.
“We’ve played against him before,” McDaniels said. “He’s a really good competitor, made some critical throws for them. You’d have to ask [the Rams] about that, we just prepared for all three [Los Angeles quarterbacks], not necessarily knowing who we’d see on a short week.”
Mayfield is now the first quarterback in NFL history to lead two comebacks of 13 points or more in his debut with two separate teams.
On that game-changing drive, Las Vegas had a Crosby/Chandler Jones sack wiped off after defensive lineman Jerry Tillery was whistled for unsportsmanlike conduct, knocking the ball out of an already down Mayfield’s hand.
Not to mention, the drive would've ended earlier via an interception by safety Duron Harmon but defensive holding on defensive back Amik Robertson nullified the turnover.
“I don’t know exactly what happened in the scrum of the game at that point,” McDaniels said. “I didn’t get any communication relative to what was said or what was done.”
With one final chance at redemption, the Raiders’ final gasp for breath expired when quarterback Derek Carr threw his second interception of the game, sealing the win for the Rams.
Carr had an exciting start to the game, mainly because receiver Davante Adams sparked early in this one.
Facing a 3rd and 5 on the team’s opening drive, Adams raced past Los Angeles cornerback Jalen Ramsey for a one-hand catch for 32 yards through the defensive pass interference. He later burned Ramsey again, this time on a 3rd and 3, for 35 yards.
Adams ended the night with 71 yards on three receptions.
Carr went 11-for-20, throwing for 137 yards and two interceptions. On the other hand, Mayfield completed 22 of his 35 passes, passing for 230 yards and a touchdown. As a team, Las Vegas was 1-for-4 in the red zone.
“They took away some things down the field,” McDaniels said. “We hit a couple and then we had a couple of other opportunities in terms of shots and those kinds of things that they defended well. They forced us to check the ball down a little bit.”
Carr was aided by another strong night from running back Josh Jacobs who finished just a yard shy of his fourth straight 100-yard rushing game. He did, however, become the sixth runner in team history to have five straight games of 20 carries or more.
Jacobs finished with 99 yards and a touchdown on 27 carries.
For a brief moment in the second half, Jacobs left the field after appearing to injure his left hand after rolling over on it post-tackle. Coming into the game, he was already battling a calf issue that left him limited at practice this week.