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Patriots rebound with defeat of Raiders

Oct 3, 2011 - 1:29 AM Oakland, CA (Sports Network) - Wes Welker totaled 158 yards and one touchdown on nine receptions as New England downed Oakland, 31-19.

Tom Brady threw for 226 yards and a pair of touchdowns on just 16-of-30 passing for the Patriots (3-1), who recovered from a disheartening loss at Buffalo last week.

"Nothing surprises me with Wes. He's the heart and soul of this team and he's been that way since the day he got here," Brady said of Welker, who has compiled 375 receiving yards in the last two contests. "He's become a real dynamic player. He's clutch, mentally tough...he's awesome. He shows up every single day to be the best he can be, and is an example to everybody."

Stevan Ridley posted 97 yards and a score on 10 carries, BenJarvus Green- Ellis added 75 yards and a rushing TD on 16 attempts, and Deion Branch added a touchdown reception for New England, which hosts the rival Jets next week.

Jason Campbell completed 25-of-39 passes for 344 yards and a touchdown but was picked off twice for the Raiders (2-2), who travel to Houston next Sunday.

Darrius Heyward-Bey recorded four receptions for a career-high 115 yards, Denarius Moore posted a TD catch and Michael Bush ran for a score in defeat.

"We just didn't play well, that's the way it is," said Raiders head coach Hue Jackson. "We had some opportunities and didn't get it done. It's about what coach Jackson can do to get things in order. Today I didn't get it done. We've got to play better on defense, on offense, and special teams. Ain't no magic to it, we've just got to get back to work."

Ridley completed the Pats' opening drive of the second half with a 33- yard run through several tacklers, reaching the end zone for the first time in his career and giving the visitors a 24-10 advantage.

Oakland then ran more than 11 1/2 minutes off the clock but were only able to come up with a 26-yard field goal from Sebastian Janikowski for an 11-point spread with 3:21 left in the third quarter.

The visitors responded with an 80-yard drive in eight plays which lasted an economical 4:43 and spilled into the fourth quarter. It ended on a Brady-to- Branch four-yard connection to make it 31-13.

The Raiders offense proved to be ineffective down the stretch, as three subsequent drives ended via an interception, punt and turnover on downs.

Oakland's defense stopped Ridley on a 4th-and-goal from the one, then Heyward- Bey's 58-yard catch set up Moore's six-yard score for a 31-19 game with 28 seconds left. The conversion pass fell incomplete and the onside kick was recovered by the Patriots.

Janikowski made a 28-yarder to cap Oakland's initial possession, but Brady found Welker for a 15-yard TD strike on New England's first touch.

Bush capped an 88-yard drive with a one-yard plunge early in the second quarter and Oakland led 10-7, but the Pats engineered a 64-yard drive and surged ahead by a 14-10 count on a one-yard TD run from Green-Ellis.

Patrick Chung then picked off Campbell in the end zone, and after New England moved 54 yards in 11 plays, it assumed a 17-10 edge on Stephen Gostkowski's 44-yard field goal.

Game Notes

New England has beaten Oakland three straight times in the regular season...Brady surpassed Joe Montana for ninth on the all-time list with 274 touchdown passes...The Michigan product also extended his streak to 20 straight games with at least one TD pass, the second-longest active streak in NFL (Drew Brees -- 31)...New England also recorded its 12th straight 30-plus- point game, second in NFL history only to St. Louis, which did so 14 consecutive times in from November, 1999 to October, 2000...Heyward-Bey, out of Maryland, totaled 105 yards on five catches last October 31 against Seattle.