OAKLAND CA - DECEMBER 19: Tim Tebow #15 of the Denver Broncos kneels on the ground before their game against the Oakland Raiders at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on December 19 2010 in Oakland California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Broncos Vs. Raiders: Tim Tebow's First NFL Start Derailed By Oakland Offense, Poor Broncos Defense

Tim Tebow threw for a touchdown and rushed for a touchdown, but the Broncos' defense failed to show up, allowing 39 points.

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Broncos Vs. Raiders: Tim Tebow's Two Touchdowns Not Enough As Oakland Wins, 39-23

Tim Tebow's first career NFL start had its ups (touchdowns) and its downs (a loss), but it was a strong building block for the rookie quarterback. Tebow rushed for a 40-yard touchdown on a QB draw and threw a 33-yard strike to Brandon Lloyd in the end zone, all in the first quarter. And that's when it all went wrong again for the Broncos.

Tied at 14 after the first quarter, the Oakland Raiders outscored the Broncos, 25-9, over the last three quarters of the game. There was an astonishing lack of play on the field and of coaching on the sidelines by the players and the coaches. In the fourth quarter, everything came together on a Raiders safety. On 2nd-and-14, the Broncos were on their own two-yard line. Tebow handed off to Lance Ball, who was tackled in the end zone for two points. It was poor play-calling by offensive coordinator Mike McCoy.

The Broncos defense disappeared once again. The Raiders had two scoring drives that each ended after only one play. On their first drive, Jacoby Ford rushed for a 71-yard touchdown and in the fourth quarter Jason Campbell connected with Marcel Reece for a 73-yard touchdown pass.

The Raiders had 264 rushing yards and averaged 6.4 yards per carry. The Broncos, meanwhile, had 106 yards for 3.2 yards per carry. Tebow had 78 of those yards, second most by a Denver Broncos quarterback. Lance Ball took the majority of rushes for the Broncos after Knowshon Moreno left the game with a rib injury. His status going forward is unknown right now.

Overall, Tim Tebow performed well enough given the conditions he played with leading up to and during the game. He was 8-of-16 passing (138 yards) with a touchdown and a 100.5 QB rating. He was sacked only twice. Receiver Brandon Lloyd benefited the most from Tebow, making four receptions for 79 yards.

After this loss, the Broncos have allowed 98 points to the Raiders this season (they previously allowed 59 points in a home loss) and are 1-4 in the division, 3-11 overall. The Raiders, though, improved to 5-0 in the AFC West, 7-7 overall.

The Broncos host the Houston Texans (5-9) on Sunday, Dec. 26 and Tim Tebow certainly did enough today to earn the start next week.

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Broncos Vs. Raiders: Jason Campbell Throws Strike To Marcel Reece, Scores 73-Yard Touchdown

The Oakland Raiders have taken a 30-20 lead over the Denver Broncos in the fourth quarter. Sebastian Janikowski added another field goal to give the team a 23-20 lead in the third quarter, but early in the fourth quarter it was Jason Campbell who widened the lead.

After a Broncos put to start the fourth quarter, Jason Campbell struck on the first play of the new drive. He found a wide open Marcel Reece who raced the ball 73 yards to the end zone. After a false start penalty, Sebastian Janikowski made the extra point to give the Raiders a 30-20 lead.

Can Tim Tebow lead the Broncos to a fourth quarter comeback?

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Broncos Vs. Raiders: Tim Tebow's Two Touchdowns Highlight 17-17 First Half

A little Tim Tebow will do a team good. A lot of Tim Tebow will give one's team the lead at some point. That's how it has been today for the Denver Broncos. Rookie quarterback Tim Tebow made his first career NFL start because Kyle Orton's rib injuries was too severe to play. Tebow has led the Broncos to a 17-17 tie at halftime with a rushing touchdown and a passing touchdown.

After a quick three-and-out by Tebow and the Broncos, the Raiders scored on their first offensive play of the game, a 71-yard end-around by receiver Jacoby Ford. But that nor a second stalled drive was going to discourage Tebow. Broncos defensive end Kevin Vickerson intercepted Jason Campbell for a four-yard return. After a penalty put the Broncos on the Oakland 40-yard line, Tebow faced a 3rd-and-24. Just like he did with the Florida Gators, Tebow made a QB draw and rushed for a 40-yard touchdown. Backup running back Correll Buckhalter aided Tebow with a key block on the run.

On the Raiders' next possession, Darren McFadden fumbled the ball, which Broncos linebacker Jason Hunter recovered. On the second play of Denver's new drive, Tebow threw a deep pass to Branond Lloyd in the end zone. The original call was an incomplete pass. However, Broncos coach Eric Studesville challenged the play. Upon further review, the referee reversed the call after finding Lloyd had possession of the ball while still in the end zone. That score put the Broncos up. 14-7.

However, the rush defense has left much to be desired. Besides the Jacoby Ford run, Darren McFadden has rushed for 77 yards. The Raiders have 201 rushing yards total. The Broncos, only 89 (63 by Tebow alone). Knowshon Moreno, who has only five yards on four carries is out with a side injury and his return is questionable.

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Broncos Vs. Raiders: Michael Bush Ties Game At 14

The Oakland Raiders answered right back with an eight-play, 69-yard drive. The Raiders relied heavily on the run to reach the end zone, having Jason Campbell attempt only one pass. Darren McFadden had a 36-yard run to put the Raiders at the Broncos’ two-yard line. Two plays later, Michael Bush scored a one-yard touchdown to tie the game at 14.

Darren McFadden has 72 rushing yards already. With Jacoby Ford’s 71-yard run earlier, the Raiders have 143 rushing yards between Ford and McFadden. The Broncos have 68 yards, largely due to Tebow’s 40-yard touchdown rush.

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Broncos Vs. Raiders: Tim Tebow, Brandon Lloyd Connect For Long Touchdown Pass

On the Raiders first series after Tebow's rushing touchdown, running back Darren McFadden reached the 1,000-yard rushing mark, but he wound up losing 11 yards and the ball.  Denver's Jason Hunter recovered the ball at Oakland's 32-yard line. After a one-yard loss by Knowshon Moreno, Tim Tebow threw a deep pass to Brandon Lloyd in the end zone that was initially called incomplete.

Interim coach Eric Studesville challenged the play. Upon further review, the referee determined that Brandon Lloyd maintained possession of the ball while he fell on his backside. Further, he was in-bounds with control of the ball. Tim Tebow threw a 33-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Lloyd. Steve Hauschka, replacing Matt Prater for a second week, made the extra point.

After the touchdown pass, the sun broke through the clouds. Can Tim Tebow make the sun shine?

Tebow now has a touchdown pass and a touchdown run, but can he add more?

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Broncos Vs. Raiders: Tim Tebow Rushes 40 Yards For Touchdown

On 3rd-and-24, Tim Tebow rushed for a 40-yard touchdown to tie the game at seven. Orton was served well with a nice block from running back Correll Buckhalter. He rushed up the middle missing and brushing off would-be tacklers.

This play was set up first by defensive lineman Kevin Vickerson, who intercepted Jason Campbell on the previous drive. Knowshon Moreno was called for a 15-yard face mask penalty that put the Broncos on 1st-and-25.

It was the longest run from scrimmage by the Denver Broncos this season.

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Broncos Vs. Raiders: Tim Tebow's First Drive; Oakland's Jacoby Ford Scores 71-Yard Touchdown

The Denver Broncos received the ball to start the game, giving Tim Tebow his first chance at leading the team to a scoring drive. However, it quickly turned into three-and-out.

On his first snap, Tebow handed off to running back Knowshon Moreno for a six-yard run. Then operating out of the Wildcat formation, Moreno took a direct snap and lost a yard. On third down, Tim Tebow threw an incomplete pass to Eddie Royal.

After Britton Colquitt punted the ball away, the Raiders scored on their first offensive play of the game, Receive Jacoby Ford made a 71-yard touchdown run on an end-around. Champ Bailey was held on the play by Darius Heyward-Bey, but the penalty was not called.

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Broncos Vs. Raiders: Matt Prater, Brian Dawkins Inactive; Kyle Orton 3rd QB

The Denver Broncos just announced today's inactives, which include kicker Matt Prater and safety Brian Dawkins:

Broncos Inactives; Prater, Dawkins, Maroney, Vaughn, Olsen, D.Thomas, Veikune, Orton is the 3rd QB. #fbless than a minute ago via web

Steve Hauschka filled in for Prater last week and will take over kicking duties again this afternoon. Brian Dawkins will miss his third game in the row. Rookie wide receiver Demaryius Thomas will miss his fourth straight game.

Kyle Orton was not declared inactive; rather he was designated as the team's third quarterback. Basically, this is a way to say that the only way Orton will play today is if both Tim Tebow and his backup, Brady Quinn, are injured.

Under NFL rules, if the third quarterback enters the game before the fourth quarter, the other two quarterbacks are ineligible to return to the game. However, there is no penalty if the third quarterback is used in the fourth quarter.

Orton does not count toward the 45-man active roster today under the NFL's third quarterback rule.

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Report: Tim Tebow To Start Sunday Against Raiders

ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter reports that the Denver Broncos plan to start rookie quarterback Tim Tebow on Sunday afternoon against the Raiders in Oakland:

Denver plans to give rookie quarterback Tim Tebow his first NFL start Sunday at Oakland in the Black Hole.less than a minute ago via ÜberTwitter

 

Kyle Orton injured his ribs during last Sunday's game against the Arizona Cardinals. It looked as though Tim Tebow would enter the game, taking warm-up passes and snaps, but Orton stayed on to finish the game. However, on Wednesday it became apparent that Orton would have problems playing on Sunday.

He had limited participation in practice on Wednesday, throwing the ball to quarterbacks coach Ben McDaniels but not to any receivers. That carried over to Thursday and Friday, which led him to be listed as questionable after practice concluded on Friday.

Tim Tebow received the first team reps over three days of practice and will be under center in the black hole of Oakland on Sunday. Tebow has a career QB rating of 118.8 on one pass attempt. That one attempt was a three-yard touchdown completion to Spencer Larsen in the team's victory over the Chiefs. Tim Tebow, who also had a rushing touchdown against the Chiefs, has 12 rushes for 28 yards and three rushing touchdowns.

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