The Oakland Raiders despite getting off to an uncharacteristic slow start in the start in the standings 0-2-1 record after three games rebounded quickly. Thanks in large part to the ageless George Blanda who either came off the bench for Daryle Lamonica or made several key kicks over the course of the season. This is a look at some of the best moments from the 1970 season.
October 11, 1970 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Oakland, CA Oakland 35 Denver 23: The reeling Raiders met the surprising Denver Broncos in a must win game for them. Denver got off to a good start in the game leading at one point 17-7 in the second quarter. The Broncos scoring early was a 23 yard Bobby Howfield field goal and touchdowns by Floyd Little and Mike Haffner. Little scored his touchdown on a 54 yard and a Pete Liske to Haffner 23 yard scoring pass. Denver cornerback intercepted Lamonica on the first play of the game. Howfield kicked field goals of 34 and 47 yards in the third quarter to give Denver a 23-21 lead going into the fourth quarter.
The Raiders offense which cranked out 522 total yards in the game got on the board in the first quarter when Lamonica threw the first of his four touchdown passes to Raymond Chester from 24 yards out. In the second quarter Lamonica hit Warren Wells from 32 and 60 yards to give Oakland a 21-17 going into the second half. In the fourth quarter Lamonica hit Wells again from20 yards out and Charlie Smith ran it in from the five for the clinching touchdown.
November 1, 1970 Municipal Stadium Kansas City, MO Oakland 17 Kansas City 17: Normally a tied wouldn’t merit consideration but the way this game finished up was one of the strangest one would ever see. With Chiefs on the verge of running out the clock with a 17-14 lead that is when all the craziness occurred. Chiefs quarterback Len Dawson scrambled on a third and 11 play ran the ball to the Oakland 29 was tackled and Ben Davidson of the Raiders hit Dawson with a shot that was called for a personal foul. After marching off the penalty Otis Taylor of the Chiefs hit Davidson which resulted in a flag on Taylor. The officials ruled it offsetting penalties and put the ball back to the original ine of scrimmage. Even though the Taylor penalty occurred after the play was over the officials ruled otherwise. The Chiefs eventually punted and Oakland drove from its 20 to the Kansas City 41 with three seconds remaining. Blanda kicked a 48 field goal as time expired for the tie.
The other scoring in the game came in the second quarter as each team traded touchdowns with the Chiefs getting on the board first. Wendell Hayes scored on a four yard run after Dawson hit Taylor on a 56 yard bomb. Oakland got the next two scores in the game when Daryle Lamonica hit Raymond Chester on touchdown passes of three and eight yards each. Kansas City countered with a Jan Stenerud 33 yard field goal and a Dawson to Taylor 13 yard scoring pass in the fourth quarter.
November 8, 1970 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Oakland, CA Oakland 23 Cleveland 20: This dramatic Oakland win highlighted why Blanda was so valuable in 1970.Trailing the Browns 20-13 in the fourth quarter Blanda came off the bench to replace Daryle Lamonica in the fourth quarter he hit Warren Wells from 14 yards out to tie the game. With three seconds left in the game Blanda drove the Raiders to the Cleveland 46 yard line where he calmly booted a 52 yard field goal to put a knife through the Browns.
Oakland led 13-0 in the second quarter before Cleveland got going. Blanda hit field goals of 43 and 9 yards to go along with his later one. The lone early Raiders touchdown happened when Lamonica hit Charlie SMith from 27 yards out in the second quarter. Cleveland began to rally just before halftime when Bill Nelson hit Leroy Kelly on a 10 yard pass and Don Cockroft 42 field goal in the second quarter. In the third quarter Bo Scott ran 63 yards after breaking through the Raiders line to give Cleveland a 17-13 going into the fourth quarter. Cockroft in the fourth quarter added his second field goal of the game this time from the 32 making it 20-13.
This just a few of the best of John Madden’s squad in 1970. Although the season ended short of its ultimate goal in Baltimore it was still a great season.
1970 Oakland Raiders www.profootballreference.com
1970 Oakland RaidersJohn Schaeffer