Opportunistic Bills rout sloppy Raiders, 34-14

(TSX / STATS) -- ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Losing key pieces has not stopped the Buffalo Bills' defense from making winning plays.

After trading All-Pro defensive tackle Marcell Dareus on Friday and playing without starting defensive backs Jordan Poyer and E.J. Gaines, the Bills forced four turnovers and scored 13 points off a flurry of three takeaways in a span of five minutes during their 34-14 victory over the Oakland Raiders on Sunday.

"These guys are resilient," said Sean McDermott, who became the first Bills head coach to win his first four home games. "They put in so much time during the week that they weren't going to be denied. And that's the true essence of respecting the process."

Buffalo leads the NFL with a plus-14 turnover margin and had its fourth straight game with at least three takeaways, extending the NFL's longest streak.

Rookie linebacker Matt Milano returned a fumble for a touchdown and forced a fumble that led to a field goal. Safety Micah Hyde made his fifth interception of the season, and cornerback Trae Elston recorded his first to seal the victory.

"It's awesome," said quarterback Tyrod Taylor, who had 165 passing yards and two touchdowns (one passing, one rushing). "Our defense does a great job of getting us the ball back. We know as long as they are on the field, we have the opportunity of getting a short field. They create turnovers week in and week out and it's our job to complement them and put the ball in."

LeSean McCoy rushed for 151 yards and a touchdown for the Bills, who improved to 5-2 for the first time since 2011.

"This team just shows you heart," McCoy said. "It's hard to go against the eye of the tiger, a team that will claw and fight to the end. It's hard to beat a team like that. When you have that, I think the talent kind of goes out the window, the athletic ability of the players goes out the window. You know, you got that big heart and guys believe and guys want to win, it just shows you the type of culture that Sean is kind of bringing here."

The turnovers disrupted a Raiders offense that had seemed to find its footing by gaining 505 yards in last week's win over the Kansas City Chiefs. Oakland (3-5) fumbled four times and lost two of them.

"Clearly that was the biggest factor in the game, it usually is," Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio said. "Not many people are winning with minus-4."

David Carr was 31-of-49 passing for 313 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. DeAndre Washington accounted for 88 total yards (26 rushing, 62 receiving) and a touchdown, but lost a fumble that led to the Bills' go-ahead touchdown just before halftime. Wide receiver Michael Crabtree caught five passes for 83 yards.

"We've got to get back to doing the little things right because that is the difference in this league," Carr said. "Everybody is talented and everybody has good players and good plans. The thing that separates people is all the little things leading up to Sunday."

McCoy put the game away with a 48-yard touchdown run with 3:12 remaining. It was McCoy's longest gain of the season.

The Raiders cut Buffalo's lead to 27-14 when Carr connected with Washington for a 4-yard touchdown on fourth down with 10:54 left.

Taylor leaped and reached across the goal line to score a touchdown on fourth-and-goal at the 1-yard line to put the Bills ahead 27-7 on the first play of the fourth quarter.

Buffalo scored 13 points on three Raiders turnovers in a span of 5:00 to build a 20-7 lead early in the second half.

Milano knocked the ball away from Jalen Richard on a punt return to give the Bills the ball at the Raiders' 14, and Stephen Hauschka's 35-yard field goal made it 17-7 3:16 into the third quarter.

Hyde's interception of a pass tipped by linebacker Preston Brown on the third play of Oakland's ensuing drive led to a 44-yard Hauschka field goal that extended the Bills' lead to 20-7.

The Bills had taken a 14-7 lead with 32 seconds left in the first half when cornerback Leonard Johnson forced Washington to fumble and Milano picked the ball out of the air and dashed 40 yards for his first career touchdown.

Taylor tossed a 6-yard touchdown pass to former Raiders receiver Andre Holmes to tie the game at 7-7 midway through the second quarter. Holmes caught a third-down pass two plays before the touchdown.

The Raiders drove 81 yards on their first series and established an early 7-0 lead on fullback Jamize Olawale's 1-yard touchdown run. Olawale converted a fourth-and-1 run earlier in the drive.

NOTES: The Bills inducted 1962 AFL MVP Carlton Chester "Cookie" Gilchrist onto their Wall of Fame during a halftime ceremony. Gilchrest helped the Bills win the AFL championship in 1964. ... Raiders FB Jamize Olawale injured his hamstring on a 65-yard kickoff return that was negated by a holding penalty. ... Raiders CB David Amerson (foot) and SS Karl Joseph (groin) did not play. ... The Bills were without FS Jordan Poyer (knee), CB E.J. Gaines (hamstring) and TE Charles Clay (knee). ... Bills DT Adolphus Washington entered the starting lineup following Friday night's trade of Marcell Dareus to the Jacksonville Jaguars. ... The Raiders remain the only NFL defense without an interception.


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