Raiders 35, Patriots 20
FOXBORO, Mass. (AP) _ Lyle Alzado scored on a fumble recovery in the end zone and Lester Hayes and Sam Seale returned interceptions for touchdowns as Los Angeles’ defense made up for a sputtering offense and gave the Raiders a 35-20 National Football League victory over the New England Patriots Sunday.
The Raiders broke a two-game losing streak despite playing nearly half the game with third-string quarterback Rusty Hilger, a rookie. Jim Plunkett missed the game with a shoulder injury and Marc Wilson sat out the rest of the contest after hurting his right ankle in the third quarter.
Trailing 20-14 at halftime, the Raiders, 2-2, took the lead for good on Alzado’s fumble recovery with 1:49 left in the third period.
The Patriots, 2-2, had a first down at their 11-yard line when Craig James was stripped of the ball by linebacker Brad Van Pelt as James ran up the middle. Raider linebacker Rod Martin picked the ball up and fumbled into the end zone, where Alzado, a defensive end, pounced on it near the end line.
Hayes’ touchdown came on Tony Eason’s second pass of the game and gave Los Angeles a 7-3 lead. Hayes picked the ball off when he stepped in front of Irving Fryar on a pass into the left flat and ran 27 yards for the score 3:49 into the game.
Los Angeles, which punted on 11 of its 15 possessions, capped its comeback on Seale’s 38-yard interception return with 5:24 left in the game.
The Raiders also scored on touchdown passes of 38 yards from Wilson to Dokie Williams and 2 yards from Hilger to Todd Christensen.
Tony Franklin’s 47-yard field goal gave New England a 3-0 lead, and the Patriots went ahead 10-7 on Eason’s 40-yard scoring strike to Fryar.
But Wilson put the Raiders on top 14-10 with his throw to Williams with 49 seconds remaining in the first quarter.
Franklin’s 20-yard field goal and linebacker Andre Tippett’s 25-yard return of a fumble recovery boosted New England into its halftime lead.