Khalil Mack was unstoppable Sunday, piling up five sacks in leading the Oakland Raiders (6-7) to an upset 15-12 win over the Denver Broncos (10-3) at Sports Authority Field. Here's what you need to know:
- The Raiders have themselves a superstar in Khalil Mack. The second-year linebacker abused poor Michael Schofield all day, finishing with five sacks, including a strip that led to a safety and a fourth-quarter takedown of Brock Osweiler that doomed Denver's final possession. Mack has at least two sacks in each of the past three games and 14 on the season. His five sacks tied a Raiders record held by Howie Long. Wow.
- This game was almost laughably one-sided at halftime. The Broncos outgained the Raiders 224 to minus 12 in total yards, with Oakland's biggest play of the half just four yards. The Raiders stayed alive because the Broncos had to settle for four Brandon McManus field goals and a 12-0 lead.
- He's unlikely to get much pub, so we'll show him love here: Raiders punter Marquette King played a huge role in Oakland stealing this game. King put five of his 10 punts inside the 20-yard line, and buried Denver inside their 5 on a possession that ended with a safety. In the fourth quarter, he boomed a game-high 55-yarder that was muffed by Emmanuel Sanders and recovered by the Raiders. Three plays later, Oakland scored the go-ahead touchdown.
- Brock Osweiler was hit with the first loss of his career as a starter, but he was not the main culprit in the offense's disappearing act in the second half. Osweiler was under constant duress, and was let down by some bad drops from his receivers. Osweiler does deserve blame for missing a wide-open Virgil Green in the end zone in the second quarter, a misfire that acted as a four-point swing.
- Vernon Davis has found a role in the Broncos' offense, but he picked a terrible time to have one of the worst drops of his career. On fourth-and-5 inside four minutes, Osweiler found Davis all alone over the middle for a 20-yard gain. The ball clanged off Davis' hands and the Raiders took over in Broncos territory. It would be Denver's last true scoring chance.
- Bad timing put the Raiders in a difficult spot early in the fourth quarter. After Derek Carr hit Mychal Rivera for a touchdown to give Oakland a 15-12 lead, Jack Del Rio was forced to go for two because snapper Jon Condo was in the locker room being treated for a shoulder issue. The two-point try failed, keeping Denver within a field goal. Brandon McManus and Sebastian Janikowski traded misses in the final period.