The Denver Broncos won the opening coin toss and deferred possession to that all-important third quarter where Denver has scored just 10 offensive points all season long.
On the first drive for the Las Vegas Raiders, they got two big first downs on passes to Davonte Adams to quickly get them into field goal range. He began with two catches for 36 yards on that drive.
A great defensive stop for a six yard loss was wiped out by Nathaniel Hackett’s decision to accept a holding call instead. So instead of a second and 16, the Raiders were first and 20. The decision ended up working out as back-to-back incompletions from Derek Carr forced them into a third and 20. The defense would ultimately force the Raiders to punt, so no field goal attempt after all.
With Klint Kubiak calling plays for this game, the Broncos opened up the game inside their own 10-yard line in a three tight end formation.
Russell Wilson looked to Greg Dulcich on the first offensive play for 16-yards and an immediate first down. After a short run from Melvin Gordon, Wilson went deep to Courtland Sutton who drew the pass interference call to put the Broncos in business bear midfield.
Chase Edmonds gained four yards on first down from there, then a quick slant to Sutton got another first down. Russell Wilson was drilled on the play, but the pass to Sutton was perfect to get the Broncos down to the Raiders 35-yard line.
Two plays later, Wilson fired a bullet to Kendall Hinton who turned it up field for what looked like a 33-yard touchdown to cap a 92-yard touchdown drive. He was later ruled down at the one yard line, so Denver would take over there. Instead, Latavius Murray would punch it in from there on the next play.
After Kendall Hinton is ruled just short, Murray punches it in on the next play from inside the one— Colum Cronin (@ColumFromCork) November 20, 2022
Broncos lead 7-0#BroncosCountry pic.twitter.com/2q3NNRzF6l
Broncos 7, Raiders 0.
The Raiders moved the ball decently on their first drive and that trend continued with their second drive. They were faced with a third and two at the Broncos 40-yard line, where Josh Jacobs just got through for the first down to put them on the fringe of field goal range in the Mile High City.
The first quarter would wind down to the end with the Raiders at the Broncos 27-yard line and a first down.