OAKLAND – The Raiders could’ve finished their Sunday in line for a playoff spot.
The Miami Dolphins and New York Jets lost earlier in the day, leaving the No. 6 seed for the victor to claim.
After a 23-19 victory over the Raiders on Sunday at Oakland Coliseum, the Titans have it. The Raiders fall to 4-7, way back in a crowded race, needing a whole lot of luck to get back in it.
The Titans earned their standing with a 10-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick to receiver Kendall Wright with 10 seconds remaining in the game.
It was of no surprise that the Titans converted on a third down. They did so all game long, – the Titans were 10-for-18 on third down -- including a pair of crucial conversions that kept the Titans comeback attempt alive.
Rookie quarterback Matt McGloin’s first NFL start was near perfect. His second start wasn’t. The offense seemed disjointed early on, and he threw for 260 yards and had an interception that resulted in a Titans field goal.
McGloin turned it on late and gave the Raiders a fourth quarter lead. He connected with fullback Marcel Reece, who got open down the left sideline, on a 27-yard touchdown that gave the Raiders a 19-16 lead.
Jennings over 100 (again): Raiders running back Rashad Jennings had more than 100 yards of total offense for the fourth straight game.
Jennings had 73 yards on 16 carries and three catches for 49 yards. He steadily churned out yards in chunks and was the offense’s only consistent weapon.
Batted down: Rookie quarterback Matt McGloin’s height was a disadvantage on Sunday against the Titans, who batted down four passes at the line of scrimmage.
McGloin is listed as 6-foot-1, but it’s doubtful he’s that tall. He throws lasers that didn’t clear the line of scrimmage and sold multiple drives. The worst offense came in the second quarter on 3rd-and-3 on the Titans’ 6, which forced the Raiders to take a field goal without a realistic shot to make a play.
Seabass struggles (again): The Raiders struggled to reach the end zone, leaving them in desperate need of a reliable kicker. Sebastian Janikowski wasn’t one.
The veteran missed a pair of field goals for the fourth time in his career, and that set the Raiders back in this game. He missed from 32 yards out at the end of the first half and from 48 in the third quarter. He made three other tries to keep the Raiders in it, because drives consistently stalled out before the goal line.
Rivera takes heavy hit: Rookie tight end Mychal Rivera got speared by Titans strong safety Michael Griffin in the first half that took him out of the game. Griffin was penalized for hitting a defenseless receiver. He torpedoed Rivera and knocked his helmet clean off.
He left the field under his own power but did not return.
Sitting it out: Rookie offensive linemen Menelik Watson and Lamar Mady were healthy scratches on Sunday against the Titans, a sign that the Raiders’ front is finally getting healthy.
Receiver Denarius Moore, running back Darren McFadden and defensive end were ruled out with injury. The Raiders really missed Moore, who left the Raiders without many receiving options.
Safety Tyvon Branch and rookie quarterback Tyler Wilson were also rendered inactive.
What's next: The Raiders have a short week ahead. They play the Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving at AT&T Stadium to begin a set of back-to-back road games. The Cowboys played the New York Giants on Sunday and remain in contention to win the NFC East.
The Raiders have struggled on the road, although they beat the moribund Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium on Nov. 17.