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Raiders rally late to beat Texans in Mexican standoff

Oakland took full advantage of some bad officiating on Monday night.

Amari Cooper scores the game-winning touchdown.
Amari Cooper scores the game-winning touchdown.
Image: Dario Lopez-Mills/AP/Press Association Images

THE OAKLAND RAIDERS took advantage of some questionable refereeing decisions to beat the Houston Texans 27-20 in Mexico City and move to 8-2, the joint-second best record in the NFL through ten games.

After being held for just 120 yards in the first three quarters, Derek Carr and the offence eventually woke up in the final stanza when the quarterback found Jamize Olawale who sprinted 75-yards to the endzone to tie the game at 20 apiece.

After taking advantage of a favourable spot on a fourth down attempt by the Texans — just one of many reasons Houston (who top the AFC South at 6-4) have to be annoyed with officials in the game — Carr then found Amari Cooper for a 35-yard touchdown which sealed the game.

Raiders This was ruled not to be a first down. Source: ESPN

Earlier in the game, DeAndre Hopkins looked to have taken a short Brock Osweiler pass 60 yards to the endzone but he was incorrectly ruled out at the 36-yard line and the Texans had to settle for three points instead of seven.

While Texans fans might grumble over the spot that ultimately changed the course of the game, some will question Bill O’Brien’s decision to go for it when well within field goal range with the teams tied at 20.

Even more bizarre was his decision to punt when down seven with just three minutes remaining, a call that looked even worse when Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio lived up to his ‘Blackjack’ nickname by going for it on fourth-and-one with just over a minute remaining and icing the game.

The win moves the Raiders to the top of the AFC West, with a full game advantage over the Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs, and the Silver and Black have a real chance of ending the NFL’s second-longest playoff drought of 14 years.

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About the author:

Steve O'Rourke

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