Three takeaways from the Raiders’ 38-20 victory over the Houston Texans on Sunday at Allegiant Stadium:
1. Snap the streak
The Raiders were 1-4 and had lost their first game out of the bye in five consecutive seasons.
They didn’t force a punt until the fourth quarter and didn’t put the Texans away until Duron Harmon’s interception return for a touchdown with 3:19 to play, but they got the victory they desperately needed.
There were plenty of bright spots. A balanced offense kept the team in the game long enough for the defense to find its footing and force stops down the stretch.
Running back Josh Jacobs proved again to be a closer with two fourth-quarter touchdown runs. Duron Harmon notched the first interception return for a touchdown in his lengthy career, and coach Josh McDaniels made sure his team stayed in it long enough to take over despite some disjointed play early.
Now the Raiders hit the road for the next two weeks, against the Saints and Jaguars, with a bit of momentum.
2. Hit the ground running
Jacobs eclipsed the 100-yard mark for a third consecutive game, the first time he has done that in his career.
It’s the sixth time a player has done so in the NFL in the past six seasons.
After setting career highs in each of the past two weeks with 144 yards against Denver and 154 against the Chiefs, Jacobs ended Sunday’s game with 143 yards and three touchdowns.
It was the 10th time in his career he has scored multiple rushing touchdowns in a game. Only Derrick Henry has more such games since the start of 2019.
Jacobs is also the first Raiders player since the AFL/NFL merger to put together three straight games with at least 100 rushing yards and a touchdown run.
Only seven players in the league since the merger had run for 140 yards and a touchdown in three straight games, and the list is impressive.
Jacobs joins Henry, Adrian Peterson, Larry Johnson, Ricky Williams, Eric Dickerson (twice) and O.J. Simpson.
This was also a historic day in franchise history for Jacobs, who passed Marcus Allen for most rushing yards in a player’s first 50 games with the Raiders.
3. Stay disciplined
Two of the game’s biggest plays came on fourth-and-inches in the fourth quarter, and the Raiders came out ahead on both because of Texans’ penalties.
Houston faced fourth down from its 33-yard line with 11:29 to play and the Raiders leading 24-20 when coach Lovie Smith decided to go for it.
Maxx Crosby flinched and induced a false start on the Texans, prompting them to instead punt.
It was their first punt of the game.
On the Raiders’ ensuing possession, Davante Adams fought for extra yardage on a third-and-11 play and came up just short of a first down.
Instead of attempting a field goal to extend the lead to seven, McDaniels kept his offense on the field.
The Raiders went with a hard count and induced an offsides penalty.
Jacobs scored from 15 yards on the next play to extend the lead and all but seal the victory.
The Raiders committed several penalties on special teams, but stayed disciplined when the game was on the line.
It’s a big reason they got their second win.
Contact Adam Hill at email@example.com. Follow @AdamHillLVRJ on Twitter.