Terrelle Pryor made franchise and NFL history on the first play from scrimmage, took a commanding halftime lead and then spent the rest of the day playing defense in a 21-18 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers Sunday at O.co Coliseum.
The Raiders improved to 3-4 with another home game to come against Philadelphia before a difficult stretch which will find them on the road four times in five weeks. The Steelers saw their two-game win streak snapped in falling to 2-5.
Pryor’s 93-yard touchdown run ignited the Raiders, who also had touchdown runs of 7 and 4 yards from Darren McFadden in the first half en route to a 21-3 halftime lead.
With the Raiders on their own 7-yard line after a holding penalty on Chimdi Chekwa on the opening kickoff, Pryor faked a handoff to Darren McFadden on a read option. The defense swarmed to the right side for the tackle, with McFadden running through a gaping hole on the right.
All that Pryor needed was a block from Rod Streater against safety Troy Polamalu to break free and use his near sprinter’s speed to complete a 93-yard touchdown run.
It was not only the longest run in Raiders history, surpassing a 92-yard run by Bo Jackson against Cincinnati in 1987, but the longest by a quarterback for a touchdown in NFL history, surpassing an 80-yard run by Kordell Stewart of Pittsburgh in 1996.
McFadden’s 7-yard run converted a short-field 26-yard drive set up when Rashad Jennings deflected a Zoltan Mesko punt. Pittsburgh scored on a 47-yard field goal by Shaun Suisham early in the second quarter. Suisham would later miss his first two attempts of the season from distances of 32 and 32 yards.
The second touchdown for McFadden came as a quarterback in the wildcat formation, with an inside fake to Jacoby Ford, a move to the right, then a cutback inside for an easy score. Pryor was lined up as a receiver to the right on the play.
The touchdown capped a 72-yard drive just when it appeared Jacoby Ford had allowed a punt to glance off his leg for a Pittsburgh recovery. Instead, replay confirmed the ball was first touched by Antwon Blake of the Steelers.
The Raiders rushed for 182 yards in the first half, but were bottled up in the second half. The defense proved up to the challenge, with Mike Jenkins intercepting a Roethlisberger pass and Tracy Porter recovering a fumble forced by Jenkins.
Pittsburgh drew within 21-10 in the fourth quarter on a 9-yard touchdown pass to Emanuel Sanders with 12:11 left, a play set up by a Ford fumble at the Oakland 11-yard line.