By Steve Corkran
Sunday, September 16th, 2012 at 11:28 am in Oakland Raiders.
The second quarter turned intoa battle for field position, with the Raiders and Dolphins trading punts at the outset.
Again, the Raiders came out on the short end of the field position. Their first four drives started at their own 16-, 8-, 7- and 14-yard line, respectively.
Running back Darren McFadden returned to the game after being poked in the eye late in the first quarter. His absence actually benefitted the Raiders, as backup Mike Goodson turned a short reception into a 64-yard touchdown.
It’s likely that Goodson would not have been on the field if McFadden hadn’t suffered the injury.
Slowly but surely, the Raiders started turning the field position in their favor. However, they, too, weren’t able to get much going in the second quarter.
A holding penalty on Brandon Myers wiped out a nice punt return by Philip Adams, which pushed the Raiders back to their own 18-yard line, when they would have had the ball close to midfield.
The Raiders crossed midfield after a 31-yard completion to wide receiver Denarius Moore on Moore’s first catch of the season. However, three straight Palmer misfires brought about another Shane Lechler punt.
So it went the entire quarter, with the teams trading punts, struggling to put together sustained drives.
The Raiders finally broke through on their final drive of the first half, with Carson Palmer connecting with tight end David Ausberry for a 31-yard gain to the Dolphins 30.
The drive reached the Dolphins 7, before Palmer misfired on three straight passes. McFadden had the first one clank off his chest, as he looked away too soon.
The Raiders settled for a tiebreaking, 25-yard field goal from Sebastian Janikowski and their first lead of the day.