Raiders

Roethlisberger throws five TDs, Steelers thump Chiefs

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Roethlisberger throws five TDs, Steelers thump Chiefs

BOX SCORE

PITTSBURGH -- Ben Roethlisberger threw five touchdowns passes for the fifth time in his career and the Pittsburgh Steelers throttled the Kansas City Chiefs 43-14 on Sunday night.

A week after suffering the franchise's worst loss in 27 years, the Steelers (3-1) responded by overwhelming the erratic Chiefs (2-2).

Roethlisberger hit Antonio Brown - wearing cleats featuring the profile of golf great and western Pennsylvania native Arnold Palmer - for a pair of scores.

Roethlisberger also found Markus Wheaton, Darrius Heyward-Bey and Jesse James for touchdowns as the Steelers emphatically rebounded from a 31-point meltdown in Philadelphia. The quarterback finished 22 of 27 for 300 yards and a rating of 152.5, just shy of a perfect 158.3 rating.

Le'Veon Bell ran for 144 yards on 18 carries and caught five passes for 34 yards in his return from a three-game suspension for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy. Bell's return brought Pittsburgh's high-powered offense back to full strength for the first time this year, though he spent most of the first half watching Roethlisberger go to work.

The Steelers scored a franchise-record 22 points in the first quarter as their defense forced a pair of turnovers Roethlisberger quickly converted into touchdowns. Pittsburgh reached the end zone three times in a span of six offensive snaps in the quarter and added a two-point conversion on top of it while the Chiefs floundered in the rain.

Smith was 30 of 50 for 287 yards and two inconsequential fourth-quarter touchdowns after things were well out of hand. Spencer Ware ran for 82 yards but also fumbled in the first quarter that kick-started Pittsburgh's record-setting run. The Chiefs allowed four sacks to a team that came in with an NFL-worst one on the season and could do little right.

Kansas City running back Jamaal Charles ran one time for 6 yards in his first game since tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee last October. It was perhaps the lone bright spot in a loss that played in stark contrast to a romp over the New York Jets last week in which the Chiefs forced eight turnovers.

They didn't force one against the Steelers and instead watched Pittsburgh cross the goal line six times. Pittsburgh's 43 points were the most allowed by Kansas City in a regular season game since Andy Reid took over in 2013.

INJURIES

Chiefs: Running back Knile Davis was evaluated for a concussion

Steelers: Right tackle Marcus Gilbert went down with a left ankle injury late in the first half and did not return. Linebacker Anthony Chickillo (knee) and Jarvis Jones (ankle) and Heyward-Bey (shoulder) all left in the second half and did not return.

UP NEXT

Chiefs: are off next week before traveling to take on the suddenly dangerous Oakland Raiders on Oct. 16. Kansas City is 5-1 against the Raiders under Reid.

Steelers: Begin a three-game swing against AFC East teams next Sunday when they host the New York Jets.

Derek Carr hopes pivotal Raiders offseason can expedite rebuilding process

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Derek Carr hopes pivotal Raiders offseason can expedite rebuilding process

Derek Carr is tired of burning daylight. He’s done some of that already, cycling through four head coaches, four offensive play callers and three offensive schemes in five NFL seasons. He was a young player brought in as part of a roster rebuild that worked.

It just didn’t last long. The Raiders fell back on hard times following a 12-4 campaign in 2016, and now head coach Jon Gruden’s fully committed to another radical reconstruction.

Gruden traded Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper, guys who could’ve helped the Raiders win last season. He acquired others who didn’t, namely Martavis Bryant and Ryan Switzer and several veteran defenders who won’t see another season in silver and black.

Now the Raiders enter the offseason with an arsenal: three first-round draft picks and $76 million in salary-cap space without anyone deserving of a long-term extension that must factor into the budget.

Carr’s hoping all those tools will expedite the rebuilding process. He doesn’t want to waste more seasons doing it slow, and hopes Gruden can import several impact players in one offseason.

“We need some guys who can come in and help us now,” Carr said in an interview with 940-AM in Fresno. “We have some good building pieces. We have some foundational pieces. Obviously, we have a quarterback, so we don’t need one of those. That’s the good thing.

“We just need some players who can help us win now. We’re building this thing. We’ve been building this thing. We’ve built this thing a couple of times. It’s time to get people who can just come in and help us now. There are a lot of veterans on this team who signed contracts or signed extensions or free-agent deals to come play here because we want to win and we believe in this system and what we’re doing.”

[RELATED: How Raiders can realistically improve Derek Carr's supporting cast]

Count Carr among them. He signed a $125 million extension believing incumbent stars would also be here long term and find sustained success. That wish never came true, and now Gruden’s looking to remake the franchise with new guys.

This offseason will be pivotal in Gruden’s success. It could turn things around quickly, as Carr hopes, if he and general manager Mike Mayock lock onto the right guys.

“If we get three players who are NFL ready right now, if we get three starters from those three (first-round picks) or maybe four if you count some of the other picks…,” Carr said, trailing off. “And we have some cash to spend. We have a lot of cap room. If we can spend that cap and that capital and get some good veteran players, not just average guys but guys who can make a difference, (that would be positive). We’re a lot closer than people give us credit for.”

Raiders Derek Carr dismissed by Khalil Mack when asked about being dunked on

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Raiders Derek Carr dismissed by Khalil Mack when asked about being dunked on

Khalil Mack and Derek Carr remained close even after they stopped being teammates. Carr was devastated to lose Mack in a trade for a Raiders' future draft compensation, both in the locker room and on the field.

Beyond the friendship, the two became main members of the silver and black, and brought much promise to the organization and hoped to create a culture change.

That, unfortunately, didn't come to fruition. 

But we're lucky they still participate in Twitter exchanges to show there are no hard feelings and the bromance is still alive and well. But most recently, they showed there will always be a competitive nature between the two.

Carr answered some questions on his YouTube channel Thursday. But someone wanted to ask via Twitter if he will still dunk on Khalil Mack in the offseason after it became public knowledge Mack has already dunked on him at David Carr's house.

The answer? Without question:

Well, that settles that, but we won't truly believe it until we see it. But at least there's the 1-on-1 win that Carr had against Mack.

Your move, Carr.