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Palmer takes blame for Oakland loss

Associated Press Published: October 14, 2012
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ATLANTA (AP) — Quarterback Carson Palmer didn't want to hear that the Oakland Raiders nearly came back to beat the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday.

The Raiders lost 23-20 after Matt Bryant's last-second, 55-yard field goal, and Palmer put all of the blame on himself.

Palmer believes his lone interception, which Falcons cornerback Asante Samuel returned 79 yards late in the fourth quarter, was the game's turning point.

"We fought hard all game," he said. "We had a great game plan, and I let the team down. I let our fans down. Making the mistake I made was crucial, and that's on me. That's my fault."

Beginning the game with a 1-3 record for the sixth time in eight years, the Raiders had used their bye week to design a solid game plan that flustered Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan into a season-worst 59.4 passer rating while Oakland's offense up 474 yards.

Darren McFadden had 70 of the Raiders' 149 yards rushing and Denarius Moore caught five passes for 104 yards as both players accounted for a touchdown, but Oakland still made too many costly mistakes.

Palmer and McFadden each lost fumbles, and the Raiders, who controlled the ball nearly 13 minutes longer than the Falcons, were whistled 12 times for penalties for 110 yards.

"I thought we came out here and competed today," coach Dennis Allen said. "I thought we played extremely hard. Offensively, I thought we were able to move the ball. We just weren't able to finish things off."

The Raiders' defense flustered Ryan into three interceptions, the second of which cornerback Michael Huff grabbed after diving in front of Julio Jones at the 2-yard line. The ball flew 37 yards before Huff picked it off.

On the ensuing drive, Oakland took a 3-0 lead on Sebastian Janikowski's 52-yard field goal.

Atlanta running back Michael Turner managed just 33 yards on 11 carries, and tight end Tony Gonzalez had just two receptions before he hooked up with Ryan twice on the winning drive.

"I think we were a little bit better in coverage today and I think we were able to get to the quarterback a few times," Allen said. "I think one of those interceptions we were able to hit him and the ball kind of fluttered up a little bit, so those things work hand in hand."

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