(Sunday, November 22nd)
Final Score: Oakland 20, Cincinnati 17
Oakland, CA (Sports Network) - Sebastian Janikowski kicked a game-winning field goal with 15 seconds to play after the Bengals fumbled on a kickoff return, lifting Oakland to a stunning 20-17 win over Cincinnati.
The 33-yard field goal was set up by an Andre Caldwell fumble on the kickoff following a game-tying touchdown throw by Bruce Gradkowski.
The 29-yard scoring strike to Louis Murphy, which came with just 33 seconds to play, was one of two on the day for Gradkowski, who was named Oakland's starter in place of former No. 1 draft pick JaMarcus Russell.
Gradkowski finished the game 17-of-34 for 183 yards, with one interception, as the Raiders (3-7) snapped a three-game slide. The quarterback came up big down the stretch, as two plays before his TD pass to Murphy, he converted a 4th- and-10 with a 16-yard pass to Chaz Schilens.
The loss snapped a three-game streak for Cincinnati (7-3), which had a chance to further its lead in the AFC North, as second-place Pittsburgh fell to 6-4 with an overtime loss to Kansas City earlier Sunday.
The Bengals, who fumbled five times and lost three, got 119 yards on 21 carries from Bernard Scott, who was filling in for an injured Cedric Benson (hip).
Carson Palmer threw for 207 yards on 14-of-22 passing and ran for both of Cincinnati's touchdowns in the setback, which snapped the Bengals' franchise- record five-game road winning streak.
Cincinnati came into Sunday's contest with an 0-9 record all-time in Oakland, but looked ready to take its first victory there after getting the ball with six minutes left with a 17-10 lead.
The Bengals got possession at their own 21-yard line following Johnathan Joseph's interception of a deep Gradkowski pass. They advanced into Oakland territory, but punted after facing a 4th-and-4 at the 48.
The Raiders took over with 2:12 remaining and Gradkowski found tight end Zach Miller on the second play for 19 yards. He went to Miller again on the next play for nine yards to bring the ball across midfield.
A one-yard rush by Darren McFadden to the Cincinnati 45 converted a third down with 1:11 remaining, though the drive seemed to stall there, as Gradkowski threw three consecutive incompletions.
But on 4th-and-10, he found Schilens for 16 yards up the middle, and Gradkowski spiked the ball with 41 seconds left. On the following play, he pump-faked and sent a pass deep to the left for Murphy, who had turned to face the ball as his defender kept running a few steps. Murphy made the clean catch, turned and stretched across the goal line as he was being tackled.
"I just went through my progression and Louis was the second look," Gradkowski said. "I kind of saw the D-back was on top of him so I threw it [to the] back shoulder to him. He made a great play to catch the ball and get in the end zone."
The call was upheld after review, making it a 17-17 game, which looked headed for overtime if not for Caldwell's kickoff fumble. Brandon Myers reached up to strip the ball from Caldwell's arm, then recovered it at the Cincinnati 17.
Gradkowski ran for two yards, then took a knee twice to set up Janikowski's winner.
"This is what happens when you don't take care of the football and take care of things the correct way," Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said. "Throughout today we had a lot of opportunities, but we didn't take care of business. Guys played hard today, but we didn't play winning football."
The result was a stunning turnaround for the Bengals, who built a 14-0 lead in the first half and scored on the game's opening drive. They went 78 yards in 14 plays, eating up about 9 1/2 minutes of the first quarter in the process.
Palmer found Chad Ochocinco for 10 yards on third down to set up a 1st-and- goal at the one, then ran into the end zone with 5:32 left in the frame.
Cincinnati fumbled on its next possession, giving the Raiders the ball in Bengals territory, but Oakland gave the ball right back thanks to a fumble by Gradkowski.
Cincinnati then drove 68 yards, as Palmer's one-yard run into the end zone capped the nine-play drive to make it a two-score contest.
The Raiders got one of those TDs back late in the half on a 10-yard pass to Miller, capping a 71-yard drive with 59 seconds left.
Janikowski kicked a 52-yarder on the opening drive of the third, and Shayne Graham missed a 37-yard try on the Bengals' ensuing drive. But Graham got another chance after Raiders running back Michael Bush fumbled deep in Oakland territory.
Cincinnati couldn't find the end zone, leading to a 25-yarder from Graham to make it a 17-10 game.
The Bengals got to the Oakland 14 early in the fourth quarter, but Jeremi Johnson fumbled and Raiders defensive lineman Desmond Bryant recovered.
Miller finished with five catches for 65 yards for the Raiders, while Justin Fargas totaled a team-high 32 yards on eight carries...Larry Johnson, who the Bengals signed earlier this week after he was released by Kansas City, ran for five yards on two attempts...Ochocinco had 67 yards on four grabs...The Raiders fumbled three times and lost two.
11/22 21:23:37 ET
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