Worst play of the game
The Broncos lead was cut to 12-9 following a Khalil Mack sack in the Broncos end zone that resulted in a safety and just one drive later Emmanuel Sanders lined up as the punt returner at the beginning of the fourth quarter. Marquette King skied a punt and Sanders was under it but could not bring it into his body. The ball bounced on the turf and despite his best effort to jump on it, it bounced into Raiders long snapper Jon Condo’s hands.
Although the Broncos were struggling mightily in the second half already, the fumble gave the Raiders the ball at the 11 yard line. Four plays later the Raiders took the final 15-12 lead on a 16-yard touchdown pass to Mychal Rivera.
“I fumbled and you know it was a big time mood swing,” Sanders said postgame. “I put this entire game on my back. If I would have never muffed it who knows what would have happened so this one is on me.”
Runner up: Two other plays had big impacts on the game. With 6:59 left in the third quarter and a five-point lead still intact, Demaryius Thomas fumbled the ball following a pass from Osweiler. The turnover did not cost the Broncos any points but it ended a drive neat midfield and added to the momentum swing. Vernon Davis also had a drop on fourth down that if caught, likely would have put the Broncos into field goal range and a chance at tying the game with just a few minutes to play.
“The ball was thrown, I got super excited because I knew I was going to be wide open, took my eyes off the ball and wasn’t able to pull it in. I should know better than that. I’ve got to get better,” Davis said after the loss.