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Raiders rally to beat Chargers 35-27

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Posted Oct. 10, 2010 @ 8:34 p.m. ET

By JOSH DUBOW, AP Sports Writer

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — After 13 straight losses to San Diego, it took just about everything bouncing the Oakland Raiders' way to end the skid.

Michael Bush ran 3 yards for the go-ahead touchdown with 3:39 remaining and Tyvon Branch returned a fumble 64 yards for a score as the Raiders ended the drought with a 35-27 victory over the Chargers on Sunday.

The Raiders (2-3) used two blocked two punts, two long touchdown drives in the second half led by backup quarterback Jason Campbell and the big play at the end by Branch and Michael Huff for their first win over San Diego (2-3) since September 2003. That was the second longest active streak to Buffalo's 14-game losing streak to New England.

With the Chargers driving for the potential go-ahead score, a blitzing Huff hit Rivers just before his arm went forward, knocking the ball loose. Branch picked up the ball and raced 64 yards for the score to make it 35-27 with 58 seconds left.

When referee Clete Blakeman upheld the call on replay, years of frustration were let out by the small, but enthusiastic, crowd of Raiders fans.

Rivers threw for 431 yards and two touchdowns and Malcolm Floyd had a career-high 213 yards receiving but the Chargers have only themselves to blame for their third straight road loss of the season, losing three fumbles deep in Raiders territory.

The Chargers have allowed four special teams touchdowns in those three losses, including a touchdown and a safety following the two blocked punts after their first two drives of the game.

Campbell, who was benched halfway through the second game of the season, replaced an injured Bruce Gradkowski late in the first quarter. Gradkowski injured his shoulder after being hit by Shaun Phillips and was in for only three plays the rest of the way.

Campbell completed 13 of 18 passes for 159 yards and a 1-yard touchdown to Zach Miller, leading drives of 93 and 73 yards in the second half to give the Raiders the lead. The biggest play on the winning drive came when Campbell found Brandon Myers for a 12-yard gain on fourth-and-1 from the San Diego 24. Bush, who ran for 104 yards in place of the injured Darren McFadden, finished it from there.

Rivers' 41-yard touchdown pass to Floyd midway through the third quarter gave the Chargers a 24-15 lead. With Vincent Jackson sitting out in a season-long contract dispute, Floyd delivered the big plays at receiver that have been lack for San Diego this year He also caught passes of 34, 36 and 55 yards.

The Raiders responded with the 97-yard drive. Campbell converted a third-and-1 sneak to get the drive going and then connected on a 58-yard pass to Louis Murphy to move the Raiders deep into Chargers territory.

Campbell did a good job extending a play on third-and-goal from the 1, finding Miller in the back of the end zone for the score that was upheld after a San Diego challenge.

The Raiders answered again after a field goal by Nate Kaeding early in the fourth quarter with their final drive.

The Chargers got off to a disastrous start, having two punts blocked in the first quarter, leading to a safety and touchdown for Oakland. They also lost a pair of fumbles deep in Raiders territory to fall into an early 12-0 hole.

But they still managed to take a 17-15 lead when Rivers drove them to a 43-yard field goal by Kaeding in the closing seconds of the half.

Rock Cartwright burst through the middle for the first block against Mike Scifres, knocking the ball out of the end zone for a safety. The free kick out of bounds led to a field goal that made it 5-0 and Myers blocked Scifres' second punt into Hiram Eugene's hands for a touchdown that made it 12-0 less than five minutes into the game.

Copyright 2010 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

 

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