Carr, Raiders overcome windy, wintry weather to down Browns
CLEVELAND (AP) — Derek Carr had no idea where his passes were going or what the weather was doing.
On the shores of Lake Erie, both were wildly unpredictable Sunday.
“It was ridiculous,” said the Las Vegas quarterback. “It rained. It sleeted. It snowed. It was snowing sideways. The wind, who knows what it was?”
But the winter-like weather didn’t stop Carr or the Raiders. The Browns didn’t offer them much resistance either.
Carr t hrew a 4-yard touchdown pass to Hunter Renfrow early in the fourth quarter, Daniel Carlson kicked three field goals in nasty conditions and the Raiders controlled the clock in a 16-6 win over Cleveland.
Las Vegas coach Jon Gruden spent the week preparing his team for inclement weather. The Raiders didn’t just survive in it, they thrived.
“We kept talking about how we struggled playing on the road last year in bad weather against the Jets and the Chiefs,” Gruden said. “We kind of enjoyed it. I think our guys look forward to the challenge of the weather more than anything.”
Carr’s strike to Renfrow with 14:53 to go was the game’s only TD and helped the Raiders (4-3) bounce back after they fell apart late in last week’s 45-20 loss to Tampa Bay.
The Browns (5-3) struggled in conditions in which they’re supposed to have an advantage, and they may have suffered a bigger loss as NFL sacks leader Myles Garrett injured his knee in the first quarter. He’ll undergo an MRI on Monday.
“It’s part of the game,” Garrett said. “I took a shot on one of the first plays. After that, it was tough.”
Using running back Josh Jacobs and a short passing game, Carr controlled the clock in the second half and kept the ball away from the Browns (5-3).
On the Raiders’ first two drives after halftime, the first leading to their go-ahead TD and the other to Carlson’s 24-yard field goal with 4:24 left, they ate up 17:41.
Oakland had the ball for 37:43 to 22:17 for Cleveland.
Jacobs finished with a career-high 128 yards — 80 in the second half — on 31 carries. Last week, he had just 17 yards on 10 attempts.
“It was about time we had a run game like that,” Jacobs said. “It feels good to be that dominant.”
The Raiders’ defense did its part as Las Vegas stopped its NFL record of allowing at least 10 points at 116 straight games.
Baker Mayfield couldn’t get anything going with Cleveland’s offense, which was without star receiver Odell Beckham Jr., who suffered a season-ending knee injury last week. Mayfield, who completed 21 passes in a row in the win over Cincinnati a week ago, went 12 of 25 for 122 yards.
Mayfield’s last throw toward Jarvis Landry in the end zone was incomplete with 1:58 left, and Cody Parkey missed a 37-yard field goal to end Cleveland’s chances. Parkey did make kicks of 41 and 38 yards.
The weather was brutal.
The wind, measured from the west at 35 mph at kickoff, made it difficult for both quarterbacks to throw; affected every punt and kick; and forced the 12,000 fans to bundle up as it felt more like a game in late December — or in Cleveland, early May.
“I’m from the beach,” Renfrow said. “That was more wind than a hurricane it seemed like. It was coming sideways, backwards and forward.”
Carr did an excellent job managing the clock in the final minute of the first half to set up Carlson’s 33-yard field goal as time expired to put the Raiders up 6-3.
The Raiders appeared to take the lead in the second quarter when Carr connected with Henry Ruggs III in the back right corner of the end zone. However, Ruggs was ruled out of bounds and the call was upheld following a video review and Raiders challenge.
Garrett was limited by an ankle injury that kept him out of practice this week, and now he’s dealing with a knee issue.
At one point, Garrett was evaluated in the medical tent but came back. He was kept out on several plays, and lacked his usual explosiveness off the line.
“We haven’t made excuses and we’re not going to start now. It’s a next-man-up league,” Garrett said. “They took advantage of some of the guys we were without. They had a game plan and they executed it.”
Raiders tackle Trent Brown, who recently tested positive or COVID-19, will remain hospitalized in Cleveland overnight.
A person with knowledge of Brown’s status told The Associated Press he will not travel with the team in order to take more tests. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the team hadn’t announced an update on Brown.
NFL Network reported that he was taken to the hospital after a pregame IV caused air to enter his bloodstream. Gruden didn’t provide any details on Brown other than to say he was being evaluated and that “everything is OK.”
Raiders: Defensive tackle Maurice Hurst was carted off in the second quarter with an ankle injury and did not return. ...Safety Jeff Heath’s day ended in the first half with a hip injury.
Browns: DT Vincent Taylor left in the fourth quarter to be checked for a concussion.
Raiders: visit the Los Angeles Chargers on Nov. 8.
Browns: on their bye week before hosting the Houston Texans on Nov. 15.
AP Pro Football Writer Josh Dubow contributed to this report.
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