Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) scrambles against the Carolina Panthers defense at Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, Calif., on November 27, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) scrambles against the Carolina Panthers defense at Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, Calif., on November 27, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Carr and Mack lead Raiders to fifth win in a row, best start since 2000

Oakland — As Derek Carr sprinted back to the sideline, his right pinky dangled awkwardly.

Moments earlier, the MVP contender had jammed the digit on the snap transfer and what was shaping up to be an easy win for the Oakland Raiders had suddenly morphed into a worst-case scenario.

As the quarterback disappeared into the locker room in the opening minutes of the third quarter, the Carolina Panthers began a 25-0 run and turned what had been a 24-7 deficit into a 32-24 lead.

After the Raiders orchestrated yet another late rally to edge the reigning NFC champs 35-32 on Sunday afternoon, head coach Jack Del Rio explained that he hadn’t been certain whether Carr would return to the field.

Midway through the third quarter, the fans let the coach know that Carr was coming back.

“When the crowd started to roar. It was a roar too, so I knew it was good,” Del Rio explained. “It’s only No. 4. It’s either Charles Woodson and he’s in the booth now or it’s Derek Carr. Maybe Khalil Mack, but I saw Khalil.”

Wearing a black glove on his right hand, Carr lead the Raiders to a pair of late scoring drives, as he delivered his fifth comeback win in the fourth quarter (or overtime) of the year.

Left tackle Donald Penn insisted that he’d never questioned whether Carr would return to guide the Raiders to their fifth consecutive win and best start (9-2) since 2000.

“I knew DC was tough,” Penn said. “I asked him before he went off the field, ‘You going to be good?’ He said, ‘I’m going to be.’ I knew he was all right, man. Y’all don’t know DC. DC is a fighter.”

“He’s a beast. He’s a fighter, man,” Penn added. “He came [back] in that second half and didn’t miss a beat. I don’t know what y’all are watching, but that dude is a beast.”

With just over eight-and-a-half minutes to go in the fourth quarter, Carr found tight end Clive Walford for a 17-yard touchdown to bring the Raiders to within two points. He then connected with wide receiver Seth Roberts on a two-point conversion to tie the score.

After Sebastian Janikowski boomed a 23-yard field goal to put the Raiders ahead 35-32 with 1:45 to go, Oakland called on the defense to make one last stop. Mack, who had a already recorded a pick-six in the first half, obliged.

“Pick six, sack, forced fumble, fumble recovery. I’m just blessed to be in his presence,” outside linebacker Bruce Irvin said of Mack, who sacked Cam Newton, forced a fumble then recovered it to seal the Raiders’ win. “The guy is one hell of a player.”

With that performance, Mack became the first Raider since Woodson in 2009 to tally an interception, sack, forced fumble, recovered fumble and touchdown in a single game.

“That’s great company right there,” Mack said. “C. Wood, man, that’s the big bro. We talk all the time. He tells me, ‘It’s time for you to take over the game.’ Fortunately, I was in position to do a little bit of that.”NFL

Just Posted

Cabernet Sauvignon grapes sit in a container after being crushed at Smith-Madrone Winery in St. Helena, Calif. on Thursday, Sept. 9, 2021. (Courtesy Smith-Madrone Winery)
‘Champagne problems’ and supply chain nightmares: San Francisco’s wine industry is suffering

‘Everywhere you turn, things that were easy are no longer easy’

A Giants fans hangs his head in disbelief after the Dodgers won the NLDS in a controversial finish to a tight Game 5. (Chris Victorio/Special to The Examiner)
Giants dream season ends at the hands of the Dodgers, 2-1

A masterful game comes down to the bottom of the ninth, and San Francisco came up short

<strong>Workers with Urban Alchemy and the Downtown Streets Team clean at Seventh and Market streets on Oct. 12. <ins>(Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)</ins> </strong>
<ins></ins>
Why is it so hard to keep San Francisco’s streets clean?

Some blame bureaucracy, others say it’s the residents’ fault

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi — seen in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday — touted Congressional Democrats’ infrastructure bill in San Francisco on Thursday. (Stefani Reynolds/The New York Times)
Pelosi touts infrastructure bill as it nears finish line

Climate change, social safety net among major priorities of Democrats’ 10-year funding measure

<strong>A lion from Cambodia at the Asian Art Museum, which was acquired from a private collector and dates back to between 1150 and 1225, is one of two pieces identified as a stolen artifact in the leaked Pandora Papers.<ins> (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)</ins>
Asian Art Museum reckons with Cambodian antiquities of disputed provenance

Pandora Papers revelations accelerate culture shift at museums near and far

Most Read