Raiders notebook: Wildcat formation works perfectly for McFadden
By Eric Gilmore
Published: Sunday, Oct. 27, 2013, 10:09 p.m.
OAKLAND, Calif. — Oakland Raiders running back Darren McFadden rushed for 73 yards and two touchdowns on 24 carries Sunday, and he hurt the Steelers twice out of the wildcat formation.
McFadden scored on a 4-yard run out of the wildcat with 1:55 left in the first half, giving the Raiders a 21-3 lead.
Lining up at quarterback in the shotgun, McFadden took the snap and faked a handoff to wide-out Jacoby Ford on an end around. McFadden darted right, and then cut back up the middle and sprinted into the end zone.
“I love being back there at quarterback,” said McFadden, who ran the wildcat in college at Arkansas. “I feel like I can go back there and make the procedures, and the coaches have a lot of faith in me to do that. I saw the three guys running outside, and I looked back, just cut across the grain. Nobody was there.”
During the Raiders' second touchdown drive, McFadden gained 5 yards out of the wildcat, one play before scoring on a 7-yard run.
The Raiders sacked Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger five times, including two by rookie linebacker Sio Moore. He has accumulated all three of his career sacks in the past two games.
“That's a big deal and a big guy,” Moore said. “It takes a lot of work to bring him down. The biggest thing is you have to attack.”
The Raiders improved their record to 3-4, and they haven't given up on making the playoffs for the first time since 2002, when they reached the Super Bowl.
“It's very important,” McFadden said of the win. “We have nine games left. We want to just keep building, one game at a time, you know, trying to get into the playoffs.”
Cornerback Mike Jenkins, who had his first interception since 2011, said the Raiders were in a celebratory mood after holding off a late Steelers comeback.
“There definitely was some hoo's and ha's,” he said. “Everybody was happy. There was a lot of joy in here. We just want to keep it going, stay on the same page and get it next week.”
Eric Gilmore is a freelance writer.
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