|Other Week 9 Game Recaps|
|ARI at STL||ATL at OAK||BAL at CLE||DAL at NYG||DET at CHI||GB at TEN||HOU at MIN||JAX at CIN|
|MIA at DEN||NE at IND||NYJ at BUF||PHI at SEA||PIT at WAS||TB at KC|
Week 9 Game Recap: Atlanta Falcons 24, Oakland Raiders 0
What you need to know
The Falcons set the tone right off the bat and never gave Oakland a chance to get back in the game. They scored on their first four possessions and midway through the second quarter led 24--0.
Michael Turner had no trouble finding holes in the Raiders defense as he carried 31 times for 139 yards in three quarters of work. As a team, the Falcons averaged 4.4 yards per carry as they amassed 252 yards on the ground. Jerious Norwood scored from 12 yards out while special teams standout Jason Snelling added 47 yards in mop up duty.
Matt Ryan had an efficient day completing 17 of 22 for 220 yards and two touchdowns. He spread the ball around to eight different receivers, but Michael Jenkins caught both TD passes and Roddy White caught five for 54 yards.
John Abraham recorded three sacks; one forced fumble, and also drew a holding penalty. The Falcons now have three straight home games with a chance to move up in the NFC South division standings.
The Raiders were totally blown out, and it would take the most optimistic Oakland fan with the rosiest of rose-colored glasses to find anything positive in this game. By the end of the first half they trailed 24--0 and had been out gained 309 yards to negative two. They didn't pick up a first down until the third quarter and were only able to gain 77 total yards all afternoon.
JaMarcus Russell continued his uninspired play, hitting six of 19 for 31 yards and one interception. Michael Bush filled in for the inactive Darren McFadden by rushing three times for minus 2 yards but leading all Oakland receivers with three balls for 15 yards.
Time of possession is often a misleading statistic, but not in this case. Atlanta controlled the ball for 45:15, Oakland 14:45.
What you ought to know
|QB Matt Ryan, Pass: 17 - 22 - 220 - 2 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 4 - 1 - 0|
It's easy to forget that Ryan is just a rookie. His first four Atlanta drives resulted in scores including two touchdown passes to Michael Jenkins. Throughout the game, Ryan had his choice of targets running wide open through the Oakland secondary and spread the ball around to eight different receivers. More importantly, he didn't lose focus when his team had a big lead. In the fourth quarter, when his coach wanted him to call a time out, Ryan waited until the play clock had run down to :02 seconds before signaling to the ref. It's called "situational awareness," a trait found in all great quarterbacks.
|RB Michael Turner, Rush: 31 - 139 - 0|
Turner carried 31 times for 139 yards, though his longest run was only 16 yards. Whenever Atlanta wanted to pick up yardage it seemed all they had to do was hand off to Turner. He was held out of the end zone, but once the Falcons got the lead they didn't really try to run up the score.
|RB Jerious Norwood, Rush: 13 - 63 - 1, Rec: 2 - 20 - 0 (3 targets)|
Norwood was effective as a change of pace runner and scored on a twelve yard run. He also caught two passes for 20 yards, but was benched in the fourth quarter with the game out of reach.
|RB Jason Snelling, Rush: 8 - 47 - 0, Rec: 1 - 12 - 0 (1 targets)|
The NFL's leading special teams tackler got a chance to play some offense in the fourth quarter, racking up 47 yards on eight carries and picking up 12 yards on a screen pass.
|RB Ovie Mughelli, Rec: 2 - 23 - 0 (3 targets)|
The powerful blocking back got in on the offense fun, catching two passes for 23 yards.
|WR Roddy White, Rec: 5 - 54 - 0 (5 targets)|
Well on his way to his second 1,000 yard season, White caught five passes for 54 yards.
|WR Michael Jenkins, Rec: 2 - 64 - 2 (3 targets)|
Jenkins made the most of his limited targets, catching two for touchdowns. On the first he beat former Falcon teammate DeAngelo Hall for 37 yards, on the second he got away from Stanford Routt for a 27 yard TD.
|WR Harry Douglas, Rush: 1 - 2 - 0, Rec: 1 - 12 - 0 (1 targets)|
The rookie who made Joe Horn expendable saw limited playing time. He caught one pass in the first quarter and tried a reverse in the third quarter that only gained two yards. He also averaged 6.5 yards on two punt returns.
|WR Brian Finneran (1 targets)|
The popular Falcons veteran was targeted once in the first quarter but did not make the catch. He had beaten DeAngelo Hall down the right sideline but the pass was under thrown.
|TE Justin Peelle, Rec: 3 - 33 - 0 (3 targets)|
Normally a TE, Peelle lined up in the backfield a few times and was an effective blocking back for Atlanta runners. He also caught three passes, all in the first half, for 33 yards.
|TE Ben Hartsock, Rec: 1 - 2 - 0 (1 targets)|
Hartsock made the scoring sheet in the fourth quarter.
|PK Jason Elam 1 - 2 FG, 3 - 3 XP, 6 points|
Elam was good from 48 yards out but missed from 51. He also hit all three PATs.
|ATL Rush Defense|
The Falcons had no trouble with either Justin Fargas or Michael Bush. The Raiders rushed for 67 yards, though 46 came on two JaMarcus Russell runs.
|ATL Pass Defense|
John Abraham sacked Russell three times and Oakland only managed to net ten yards passing. For the entire game.
|QB JaMarcus Russell, Pass: 6 - 19 - 31 - 0 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 2 - 46 - 0|
Russell made enough bad plays to warrant his benching if Oakland had a better quarterback on the roster. They don't. In the fourth quarter, with the Raiders finally in the red zone, he locked on Javon Walker and threw a bad interception. Later, with their last possession, they went for it on fourth and 17. Falcon S Lawyer Malloy blitzed and Russell astutely threw the ball away.
On the plus side Russell single handedly accounted for over half of the team's offense by gaining 46 yards on two running plays, one by design, and one by necessity.
|RB Michael Bush, Rush: 3 - -2 - 0, Rec: 3 - 15 - 0 (4 targets)|
Bush was pressed into duty when McFadden was scratched. He lost two yards three carries but led the Raider receiving corpse by grabbing three passes for a total 15 yards.
|RB Justin Fargas, Rush: 6 - 23 - 0|
Fargas started the game but left in the second quarter with an arm injury. He returned briefly in the third quarter but was absent in the fourth. He picked up the Raiders first first down in the third quarter on a 12 yard scamper around left end.
|RB Justin Griffith|
Griffith suffered a knee injury last week against Baltimore and has been placed on IR.
|RB Darren McFadden|
The turf toe injury McFadden suffered in his right foot earlier in the season has reportedly healed up, but he is now suffering the same injury in his left foot. He was inactive for the second game in a row, and there is speculation that it must be the shoes. McFadden wore Addidas at Arkansas while the Raiders are contractually obligated to wear Nike.
|WR Javon Walker, Rec: 1 - 7 - 0 (4 targets)|
The leading Raiders target, Walker managed to catch one pass for seven yards. Late in the game he was open for an instant in the end zone but the pass was under thrown and intercepted.
|WR Ronald Curry|
The seven year veteran has reportedly been benched, but got into the game for one play. He was lined up in shot gun formation in the Raiders' version of the Wildcat, only to have the play blown dead by illegal procedure. Former coach Lane Kiffin experimented with that play only with McFadden taking the snap.
|WR Ashley Lelie (1 targets)|
One first quarter target was the extent of Lelie's offensive contribution.
|WR Johnnie Lee Higgins (1 targets)|
Higgins was targeted once in the third quarter and returned four kickoffs for 107 yards.
|TE Zach Miller, Rec: 2 - 9 - 0 (3 targets)|
The leading receiver for Oakland this year, Miller grabbed two passes for nine yards.
|TE John Madsen (1 targets)|
The former Utah standout, who was cut by the Raiders but recently resigned, dropped a fourth quarter pass that hit him in the hands.
|PK Sebastian Janikowski 0 - 0 FG, 0 - 0 XP, 0 points|
A very quiet afternoon for Janikowski who only had to kickoff once to earn a game check.
|OAK Rush Defense|
The Oakland defense had no answers for the third best rushing team in the NFL. They surrendered 252 yards as three runners averaged 4.4 yards per carry.
|OAK Pass Defense|
Atlanta threw the ball to maintain a balanced attack and Ryan completed 17 of 22 for 220 yards and two touchdowns. To be fair, the Raiders offense did not pick up a first down until the third quarter and the defense was on the field for over 45 minutes.