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Raiders shut out Chiefs 2nd time ever, 15-0

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Raiders shut out Chiefs 2nd time ever, 15-0

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The defense dominated, the running game clicked and the Oakland Raiders finally ended up on the winning end for the first time in seven weeks.

If only the Raiders could play the Kansas City Chiefs more often.

Sebastian Janikowski kicked five field goals, Darren McFadden rushed for 110 yards and the Raiders shut out Kansas City for the second time ever, beating the Chiefs 15-0 on Sunday.

``It's extremely hard to shut anybody out. It doesn't matter who they are. That's an accomplishment that we take great pride in,'' Raiders coach Dennis Allen said. ``I think it's huge. Our guys needed something where they get a little bit of confidence.''

The Raiders (4-10) overwhelmed the undermanned Chiefs (2-12) to snap a six-game losing streak. Sandwiched around those losses are two wins over Kansas City, a rare bright spot in this disappointing season in Oakland.

There has been little to cheer for this season for the Chiefs, who have lost 10 of 11 games and are tied for the second-most losses in franchise history behind a 2-14 mark in 2008. Kansas City's only win since September came the day after linebacker Javon Belcher killed his girlfriend before committing suicide at the team's practice facility.

``Offensively we couldn't get much done at all,'' coach Romeo Crennel said. ``Couldn't run the ball, couldn't throw the ball, got into the red zone and couldn't get any points. Defensively we tried to hang in there but we missed too many tackles and on third down we were unable to get off the field and allowed them to keep drives alive and end up with field goals.''

About the only bright spot from this loss is it kept Kansas City in the running for the No. 1 overall draft pick. The Chiefs and Jaguars are tied with the worst record in the NFL with two weeks remaining.

This matchup between two old AFL rivals lacked the meaning many of the past meetings had with both teams entering the game with at least 10 losses for the first time ever.

The quality of play matched the poor records for much of the day as the Chiefs took nearly 40 minutes to earn their initial first down of the game and the Raiders failed to reach the end zone.

But strong running by McFadden and Mike Goodson giving the Raiders a season-high 203 yards rushing, Carson Palmer playing turnover-free for the first time since September and the Raiders dominating defensively, Oakland came out on top.

``It just feels great to be able to go out there and run the ball the way we did,'' McFadden said. ``We did a great job running and the offensive line did a great job. Just a good all-around game for us.''

The Raiders held Jamaal Charles to 10 yards rushing on nine carries, giving him 14 yards on 14 carries in two games against Oakland this season. Brady Quinn was 18 for 32 for 136 yards and an interception as he missed injured receiver Dwayne Bowe.

Kansas City's best play was a 42-yard run by Charles that got called back by a holding penalty on guard Joe Asamoah.

``That was kind of how the day went,'' Quinn said. ``We'd have a big play like that and a penalty. A guy wide open and a dropped ball or I wouldn't be able to have time to throw it. We just weren't able to sustain any sort of consistency the entire day.''

The Chiefs finally got a first down with just more than five minutes remaining in the third quarter when Dexter McCluster fought for 8 yards on a catch on third-and-6. Two penalties by Oakland gave Kansas City 42 yards and helped set up the Chiefs with first-and-goal from the 9. But the drive stalled when Charles was tackled at the 8 by Matt Giordano after a short catch on fourth down.

Kansas City also failed to capitalize on a fumble by McFadden that Justin Houston recovered at the Oakland 18. An offensive pass interference and four straight incompletions by Quinn gave the ball back to the Raiders and helped seal the shutout.

The last time the Raiders recorded a shutout came in the 2002 regular season finale when they beat Kansas City 24-0. That was also the only other time they shutout the Chiefs in this long rivalry.

``We had a rough season, and it was our last home game, so we wanted to go out there and prove to our fans that we're still playing with heart and passion, we're still giving it everything we've got,'' safety Tyvon Branch said. ``So this was one of those games, it was like a fan appreciation game.''

The fans even got to see third quarterback Terrelle Pryor for the first time all season. He entered to cheers on the first series of the second quarter. The former Ohio State star player handed off on his first two plays and threw an incompletion on third down before Palmer returned to the game.

``It's a steppingstone, a step,'' Pryor said. ``I enjoyed the four plays or whatever it was. It's a stepping stone, and I was excited to get in there at least.''

NOTES: Kansas City was held scoreless for the first time since Dec. 12, 2010, at San Diego. ... The Raiders won a game without a TD for the first time since a 15-13 win against San Diego in 2000. ... The 119 yards allowed by the Raiders are the fewest since they gave up 93 to the Chargers in a 6-0 win in 1975.

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3 reasons why the Caps lost to the Penguins in Game 1

3 reasons why the Caps lost to the Penguins in Game 1

If you had to boil down the playoff history of the Washinton Capitals and the Pittsburgh Penguins into one game, Game 1 certainly seemed to fit the bill. The Capitals had their chances, they got good performances from star players and all of it came to naught as they were once again foiled by the Penguins in a 3-2 loss.

Here's Washington let this game slip away.

Missed chances

The Caps were buzzing in the first period. Already up 1-0, Dmitry Orlov and Alex Ovechkin had an opportunity to add a second goal early on a 2-on-1. Orlov faked the shot then passed to Ovechkin who had a wide open net to shoot at…but he missed. Ovechkin doesn’t miss too many of those shots. Despite how good the Caps looked in the first period, they got only six pucks through to goalie Matt Murray and took only a 1-0 lead into the dressing room. In the second period, Devante Smith-Pelly was denied an empty net rebound by Murray (more on that later). We all knew the push was coming. We’ve seen this all play out before. Simply put, Washington did not convert on its opportunities when they had control of the game. A two-goal cushion was not enough to take the wind out of Pittsburgh's sails nor was it enough to survive the three-goal flurry that was to come.

A five-minute snowball in the third period

When the push finally came, it came fast. In a stretch that lasted for less than five minutes, Pittsburgh scored three times to turn a 2-0 Caps lead into a 3-2 deficit. Patrick Hornqvist deflected in a shot from Justin Schultz at 2:59, Sidney Crosby netted a pass from Jake Guentzel at 5:20 and Guentzel got a deflection goal of his own at 7:48. That is a span of 4:49. Pittsburgh’s momentum snowballed into three quick goals which carried them to the win. Braden Holtby was brilliant for 55:11, but those 4:49 were enough to doom the Caps.

Matt Murray

As good as Holtby was, Murray was better. Despite allowing a goal just 17 seconds in, he recovered very well in what was a 32-save performance. You can put some of this game on Washington’s inability to convert on its chances, but you also have to give credit to the Penguins’ netminder as well who came up with some big-time saves to keep his team in it. The biggest was in the second period when he extended the arm and blocked what looked like an easy goal for Smith-Pelly with the glove of his blocker. As hard as it was to beat Murray when the Caps were ahead, he was unbeatable when his team finally gave him a lead to work with.

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The Redskins fill a need with Da'Ron Payne as their first-round pick

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The Redskins fill a need with Da'Ron Payne as their first-round pick

The Redskins went into the draft with everyone talking about their need to upgrade their defensive line. And despite the presence of two other intriguing defenders on the board, they went with the big guy. 

Da’Ron Payne, a defensive lineman from Alabama, was the name that Roger Goodell read off of the card when the Redskins’ turn came up with the 13thoverall pick in the draft. 

Here is our analysis of Payne from an earlier NBC Sports Washington post about him:

Stuff the run in the middle of the line? Check. Get outside to stop stretch plays? Check. Get after the passer? Check. Yes, Alabama defensive tackle Da’Ron Payne checks all the boxes the Redskins are looking for on the D-line.

He can be the immovable object, taking on double and triple teams, and he also can chase down the quarterback. At 311 pounds he could be the Redskins’ nose tackle in base and move outside in nickel.

At 6-2, 311, the Redskins likely will use Payne in the middle of the line as their nose tackle in their base defense. Defensive line coach Jim Tomsula will work with him to improve his pass rushing ability. 

Payne has been talked of as the Redskins pick since early in the draft process. As the draft unfolded, it turned out that there were two defenders, safety Derwin James and linebacker Tremaine Edmunds, who most analysts had rated considerably above Payne, still on the board. As it turns out, the Redskins apparently made the need pick and went with Payne. 

The Redskins draft an Alabama defensive lineman for the second straight year. Last year they took Crimson Tide defensive tackle Jonathan Allen with the 17th pick in the draft. 

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Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCSand follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.