John Madden giving this game the rapt attention it deserves. He’ll get around to watching it once he gets through the first chapter of the novelization of Finding Nemo.

The Raiders defense was as inept as advertised early on. The Broncos drove largely unopposed through the Raiders defense on their first two drives. The first ended in a laughably easy touchdown pass to Joel Dreessen. The next scoring chance for Denver, Oakland actually put together something resembling a defensive effort for a few plays and forced Denver into only taking a field goal.

At first it seemed an aberration, but then Oakland held in the red zone for a second straight drive after Carson Palmer winged his first interception of the night. Again, the Broncos got the ball deep into Oakland territory, but lobbed a duck that was intercepted, making for this face:

From there, a shocking display of Raiders competence ensued, punctuated by a screen pass to Darren McFadden that went for a touchdown.

The Peyton slurpage from Nessler and Mayock has been out of control. Nessler at one point compared watching Peyton play to watching a conductor lead an symphony. I’m sure the language will only get more hyperbolic and possibly lustful as the game goes on. That would be annoying enough on its own, but the announcers are pulling double duty excusing Pey-Pey’s mistakes as well. A bad overthrow on third down in the red zone? Clearly an intentional misfire so as not to jeopardize a possible field goal. A underthrow on an interception. Wait a few seconds before acknowledging that it was underthrown, then look for extraneous reasons why it didn’t reach its intended mark. PERHAPS A WIND GUST!