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Oakland Raiders shock Chiefs, notch first win of 2014

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The Oakland Raiders won their first game in over a year Thursday night, as Derek Carr orchestrated a game-winning drive to knock off the Kansas City Chiefs, 24-20. Our takeaways:

1. No one can say the Raiders don't play hard for interim coach Tony Sparano. The defensive players were flying to the ball, led by ageless safety Charles Woodson and promising young linebackers Sio Moore and Khalil Mack. They even got a few impressive plays from oft-injured 2013 first-round cornerback D.J. Hayden, who has shown flashes the past two weeks. Justin Tuck came up big on the game's final drive, hitting Alex Smith twice and saving Moore and Mack from a foolish celebration penalty by taking a well-timed time out.

2. Jamaal Charles was the best player on the field for the second-straight week, making tacklers miss on the ground and after the catch. He stood in stark contrast to the Raiders' skill-position players, all of whom lack that ability.

3. The Raiders' offense wilted once Latavius Murray was knocked out of the game with a concussion late in the second quarter. Murray scored the first two rushing touchdowns versus Kansas City this season and became the only back in NFL history with at least 100 rushing yards and a pair of scores on fewer than six carries. Just when it appeared the league's least effective ground attack since 1946 was finally getting on track, Murray was injured on a kickoff return. The ongoing woes of Darren McFadden and Maurice Jones-Drew forced the Raiders to turn to fullback Marcel Reece in the fourth quarter. Once Murray is cleared, look for McFadden to join Jones-Drew on the bench -- or perhaps even the waiver wire.

4. Outside of the impressive game-winning drive, Carr was the same inconsistent rookie held back by the highest percentage of three-and-outs since Smith's rookie season with the 49ers. Carr made a few throws early in the game, but was also nearly intercepted several times. Even with a strong arm, Carr's offense has lacked big-play ability all season.

5. Smith's .740 winning percentage ranks among the best over the past four years, but this game highlighted his two weaknesses. He couldn't make any plays down the field and had trouble moving the chains on plays that didn't involve Charles or tight end Travis Kelce.

6. Carr picked on Chiefs cornerback Ron Parker during the final drive after the Seahawks did the same throughout last week's game.

7. Congratulations to former Houston Texans defensive end Antonio Smith and backup quarterback Matt Schaub. Their 24-game losing streak was snapped.

8. This loss could come back to haunt the Chiefs, as they host the division-leading Broncos next week and travel to 9-1 Arizona the following week.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast recaps the Raiders' shocking win over the Chiefs and previews every other Week 12 game. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

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