Jon Gruden revelled in a "signature game" from Clelin Ferrell as the Oakland Raiders won a dramatic AFC West contest against the Los Angeles Chargers.

The Raiders' defense came to the fore in a 26-24 home win on Thursday, a second straight victory moving Gruden's squad to 5-4 for the season and keeping them in the playoff hunt.

Ferrell was a surprise selection at number four overall in the 2019 NFL Draft and had only registered one sack – in Week 1 – in his first seven games.

But he exploded for 2.5 sacks on Philip Rivers, who was taken down five times, fumbled once and threw three interceptions – two of which were made by Erik Harris - after being harassed all evening.

Gruden feels Ferrell's moment in the spotlight was long overdue based on his performances in the first half of the season.

"Sack totals are driving me nuts - he does a lot more than just rush the passer," Gruden said of Ferrell, who had five total pressures as well as eight combined tackles.

"He made some great plays against the run. It was a signature game for him, obviously, but it's great for him to get some sacks.

"Any time you play a great quarterback like Philip Rivers or [Matthew] Stafford or any of these guys, if you let 'em stand back there you're in trouble. I thought we had a good rush, great energy.

"We were short-handed, we didn't have [Josh] Mauro, Arden Key broke his foot, we only had seven D-linemen. I credit [defensive co-ordinator] Paul Guenther, he did a hell of a job with the scheme. Really good work.

"Cle Ferrell and the pass rush showed up and you can't say enough about Erik Harris and the secondary."

Maxx Crosby also shone as he racked up 10 pressures, the most of any Raiders defender since 2016, prompting Ferrell to give the duo a nickname.

"Salt and pepper, baby. Salt and pepper!" he shouted to reporters. "The game needed flavour, so we gave it to 'em."

And Crosby added: "A lot of people have been doubting us and we just have been working every single day. It was great, we just got to keep doing it every single week.

"Rivers is a great quarterback and the thing with him is you got to be in his face all game and try to get him flustered. We just kept coming all game until the final whistle blew – it was a big win."

The Oakland Raiders claimed a thrilling 26-24 win over the Los Angeles Chargers in the NFL on Thursday.

A fourth-quarter touchdown from Josh Jacobs helped the Raiders (5-4) edge the Chargers (4-6) in a clash between two AFC West rivals.

The Chargers had responded in the second quarter after a slow start, but they were unable to produce a late score as they suffered yet another narrow defeat.

All six of the Chargers' losses this season have been by seven points or less as they were left in third in the AFC West, behind the Kansas City Chiefs (6-3) and Raiders.

Philip Rivers went 17 of 31 for 207 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions in what was an ordinary performance at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum.

He was intercepted twice by Erik Harris, who took one of those 56 yards for the first touchdown of the game.

Rivers' pass to Austin Ekeler gave the Chargers a 24-20 lead in the fourth quarter, only for Jacobs to burst through from 18 yards with just over a minute remaining to give the Raiders their win.

Jacobs rushed for 71 yards on 16 carries, including the touchdown, while Melvin Gordon (108 yards) had earlier scored for the Chargers.

Raiders quarterback Derek Carr was solid, finishing with 218 yards and a TD on the back of completing 21 of 31 passes.

The Raiders will face the Cincinnati Bengals on November 17, while the Chargers meet the Chiefs the following day.

Los Angeles Chargers owner Dean Spanos described reports that the NFL team could relocate to London as "total f****** bulls***".

Spanos responded to a report published by The Athletic on Monday, which claimed the Chargers and the NFL could look to move the franchise to England.

The Chargers relocated from San Diego to Los Angeles in 2017 and Spanos insisted his team are not going anywhere.

"It's total f****** bulls***," Spanos told reporters on Tuesday. "We're not going to London. We're not going anywhere.

"We're playing in Los Angeles. This is our home, and this is where we are planning to be for a long f****** time. Period."

Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn was also asked about the report ahead of Thursday's clash with the Oakland Raiders and he said: "I don't think there's anything to it. Well, I know there's not anything to it.

"We're not going to let it be a distraction for us. We've got a job to do Thursday night, and that's what we're getting prepared for."

Meanwhile, the NFL also dismissed the report in a statement on Tuesday.

"No consideration has been given to the Chargers playing anywhere other than Los Angeles at the new stadium in Hollywood Park next season and beyond," the league said.

"There have been no discussions of any kind between the NFL and the Chargers regarding moving to London. Both our office and the Chargers are entirely focused on the success of the team in Los Angeles."

 

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