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Raiders Continue Their Dominance Over the Broncos : Pro football: Jaeger's field goal in overtime gives L.A. a 25-22 exhibition victory over Denver in Barcelona.

August 01, 1994|STEVE SPRINGER | TIMES STAFF WRITER

BARCELONA, Spain — Change continents.

Change time zones.

Change seasons.

But some things never seem to change. Like the Raiders beating the Denver Broncos.

They've done it at the Coliseum and at Mile High Stadium. They've done it in the regular season and the postseason.

And they did it again Sunday night, winning in an exhibition game, 25-22, on a 39-yard field goal by Jeff Jaeger in overtime, in Barcelona's Montjuic Olympic Stadium before 37,406.

It was the Raiders' fifth consecutive victory over Denver and ninth in their last 10 meetings, but at least the Broncos can take solace in the fact that this one doesn't count.

Or does it?

Certainly not in the standings, but the Raiders won a psychological victory Sunday that might well help them in the regular season if, as expected, these clubs battle for the AFC West title.

The Raiders won the mind game at the beginning and the end.

They won it at the start on their first offensive play when quarterback Jeff Hostetler threw a 75-yard touchdown pass to James Jett.

On the conversion, Hostetler, taking advantage of the NFL's new two-point option, threw to Ty Montgomery to give the Raiders an 8-0 lead.

Hostetler threw six touchdown passes against Denver in their last two meetings, last year's regular-season finale and the playoff opener--and quickly showed that, despite a revamped Bronco secondary, nothing had changed.

At the end of the game, the Raiders won another psychological battle when Phillips, eager to end this losing streak against the Raiders, put his defensive starters back in, both at the end of regulation play and in overtime.

Raider Coach Art Shell never blinked. He kept in his third-string unit and won with a backfield of Billy Joe Hobert at quarterback, Randy Jordan at tailback and Derrick Gainer at fullback.

Was Shell tempted to go back to his starters?

"I would never do that," he said. "I tell you what, it gave our young guys a good look at a veteran defense. It was pleasing to see our young guys get a chance."

Shell had told Jett on Saturday the Raiders were going long to him on the first play.

Shell kidded Jett that he seemed nervous.

"We can go to Tim (Brown) instead," Shell told his second-year receiver.

"No, no," Jett replied. "Bring it on."

Actually, it was the veteran, Hostetler, who got nervous.

Jett blew past Denver cornerback Ray Crockett and strong safety Darryl Hall failed to pick him up.

"Their safeties like to bite on the run," Shell said, "and we know our receivers can run by their corners."

Still, when Hostetler saw Jett alone near the Denver 30-yard line, he tightened up. "I saw all that open field and I couldn't believe it," Hostetler said. "It was the toughest pass I've had to throw in a long time. I just didn't want to overthrow it."

Instead, he nearly underthrew it, forcing Jett to pause and wait for the ball.

"It seemed like it took forever to get there," Jett said.

Once it did, he raced into the end zone, hurdled a low barrier at the end of the field and landed on the running track.

That's familiar territory for Jett. It's the same track where he won a gold medal as part of the U.S. 400-meter relay team during the 1992 Olympics, the same track he stepped on when the team arrived in Barcelona earlier in the week and felt chills.

"Barcelona has been good to me," Jett said.

Jason Elam got the Broncos on the scoreboard with a 35-yard field goal and Derrick Clark, a rookie running back out of Evangel College, put Denver ahead, 9-8, on a one-yard run.

Phillips had promised he would experiment with the two-point conversion quite often and he was true to his word.

The Broncos missed on their first conversion try when quarterback Tommy Maddox's pass to Anthony Miller was short.

Maddox came back to connect on a nine-yard touchdown pass to Glyn Milburn, but again, Maddox missed on the two-pointer, this one aimed at Mike Pritchard.

Denver, despite quarterback John Elway ending his day after only two offensive series, led at halftime, 15-8.

Vince Evans evened the game in the third quarter with a 20-yard touchdown pass to Daryl Hobbs.

The Raiders went back out in front in the fourth quarter on a three-yard run by Calvin Jones, who finished with 31 yards in nine carries.

"My first series in there was pretty tough," he said. "But the guys settled me down, I took a deep breath and blew it out. The guys are a lot faster here. I'm not able to get around the corner as easily (as in college). I've got to make some adjustments, but that's why they have a preseason."

Clark scored on another one-yard run with 1:52 to play.

This time, Phillips played it safe, going for a one-point conversion by Elam. With a chance to win the game in the closing seconds of regulation time, Elam missed on a 57-yard field-goal attempt.

The Raiders won the coin toss in overtime and drove for the deciding kick.

Raider Notes

The Raiders' other new tailback, veteran Harvey Williams, outgained Calvin Jones by a yard with 32 for the team high. Williams averaged 5.3 yards per carry.

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