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  • | 28.01.2019 04:55

Von Miller might be the only one at Denver Broncos headquarters lamenting Khalil Mack's startling trade from the Oakland Raiders to the Chicago Bears."I mean Youth Austin Blythe Jersey , honestly, I was shocked," Miller said. "I always felt like Khalil and Aaron Donald were untradeable guys. J.J. Watt, I thought guys like that were untradeable. Then they traded him. A guy like Khalil, he only comes around once every lifetime. You want to keep guys like that."The Broncos' star linebacker said it's "going to be a little weird" Sunday not seeing his friend, whom he's trained with the last two summers, when the Raiders (0-1) visit Denver (1-0), where Mack once collected five sacks in a single half."He's talented," Broncos QB Case Keenum said, "but I'm pretty sure they're going to play 11 guys. They're not just going to put 10 out there without him."Raiders new/old coach Jon Gruden said he's been asked aplenty about the trade that sent shockwaves through the NFL and smiles across locker rooms across the AFC West."And rightfully so," Gruden said. "He's a great guy. He's a great player. It's unfortunate we don't have him. But we feel we did the right thing for this football team, for the future of the Raiders and for this building process."I know we've got to prove it. But so does he."Mack began doing just that Sunday night at Green Bay , fresh off signing a six-year, $141 million contract, $26.5 million more than Miller got in 2016 in the shadows of his Super Bowl 50 MVP performance.Hours after Miller wrecked Seattle's game plan by sacking Russell Wilson three times and snaring the ball out of power back Chris Carson's arms for a forced fumble and fumble recovery, Mack burst into the NFC North conversation with a pick-6 and a strip sack of backup QB DeShone Kizer in which he, too White Ndamukong Suh Jersey , snatched the ball from his opponent.Whereas Miller's showing led to a 27-24 Denver victory, Mack's dominant debut was rendered a footnote when Aaron Rodgers returned from a knee injury at halftime to lead the Packers back from a 20-point deficit for a 24-23 win.One night later, the Raiders lost 33-13 to the Rams, barely touching quarterback Jared Goff just over a week after trading their star pass rusher to the Bears for a package that included two first-round picks. Bruce Irvin had the only sack when Goff held the ball too long.Mack is still on the Raiders' minds.Quarterback Derek Carr said he misses his friendship more than his play on the field."We still text, and we still talk all the time, but not seeing him every day is weird," Carr said. "I think that was the hardest part."Other subplots as the Broncos seek their sixth straight 2-0 start:KING STINGBroncos punter Marquette King didn't want to talk about Gruden this week, but he made it clear he had hard feelings over his release from the Raiders this spring.He said he never had a chance to speak with Oakland's coach before getting jettisoned."I just saw him on car commercials and stuff," King said. "I get to see him two times a year."And that was certainly a factor in King's decision to come to Denver."I just wanted to find the best place that I thought I would fit," King said. "I think there is somewhat of a revenge factor in there, too."BRYANT BACKBroncos coach Vance Joseph said Martavis Bryant's re-signing with Oakland only adds to Denver's already stiff challenge Sunday."Absolutely. He's a guy that's a vertical threat. I faced him in Cincinnati when he was in Pittsburgh for six games. He caught a 98-yard touchdown on my secondary, so I won't ever forget that," Joseph said.PRESSURE POINTAfter trading Mack, there were questions about how the Raiders would generate a pass rush. The results weren't good in the opener as Oakland had one sack and four quarterback pressures against the Rams.The Raiders had more pressures in every game last year with Mack leading the defense.Gruden said playing better defense on first and second down will give Bruce Irvin and Arden Key more chances to get to the QB on third down."You have to get them on third-and-long when you can cut loose your blitzes and some of your great rushers," he said.HOUSE OF HORRORSGruden has had little success in Denver in his career, losing all five trips to the Mile High City. Gruden lost every year with Oakland from 1998-2001, and again with Tampa Bay in his final year as a coach there in 2008.In all Youth Aaron Donald Jersey , Gruden's teams are 1-9 against the Broncos, with the one win coming in Oakland in 2001. The Raiders won 38-28 on Nov. 5, 2001, behind three TD passes by Rich Gannon.He has fond memories of that lone victory over Denver."That was the greatest win of my career as the Raiders coach, beating the Broncos," Gruden said, "because I knew how far we'd come in just a few years." Aaron Donald ripped the ball out of Matt Breida's hands to set up one touchdown. He harassed C.J. Beathard with four sacks and several other hits that helped shut down San Francisco's offense.Donald's dominance helped improve Los Angeles to 7-0 for the first time since 1985 with a 39-10 victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday and showed that the defense can play as big a role in the success as the Rams' high-powered offense."I don't think there's anybody that's been like him in the NFL," 49ers left tackle Joe Staley said. "He's in a class of his own. At the end of the day, he's still an NFL player and our job is to block him. He was really impactful today."That's an understatement.Donald used his brute strength to set up one of Todd Gurley's three touchdowns with his fumble recovery in the first half for the Rams and got a couple of his sacks by just pushing offensive linemen into Beathard and knocking him down.After recording no sacks in his first three games following a training camp holdout, Donald now has eight in the past four games, showing why he earned that $135 million, six-year contract this summer."You feel him and he did a great job affecting and influencing the game in a variety of ways," coach Sean McVay said. "He was great against the run, did a good job of being able to get to Beathard on a handful of occasions. But, our defense overall, Aaron was a big part of that."Donald had plenty of help on defense with Cory Littleton getting two sacks and a blocked punt for a safety ; Troy Hill and John Johnson III intercepting passes; and Samson Ebukam getting an early strip sack that Trevon Young recovered."One of the best defensive performances I've been around," Rams quarterback Jared Goff said. "It seemed like every time we sat down we got back up and went on the field. ... It was just a lot of fun to watch."Here are some other takeaways from the game:GURLEY'S DAYGurley ran for 63 yards White Marcus Peters Jersey , caught four passes for 23 and had his third three-touchdown game of the season. His 14 TDs this season tie Priest Holmes (2002, '04) for the most through seven games in the Super Bowl era. His most memorable score was his last one when Goff somehow found him through traffic on a cross-field screen pass and Gurley broke a tackle from Reuben Foster and raced in for the 12-yard score ."It didn't play out quite the way we wanted it to," Goff said. "That's just me and him trying to make a play. He's a great player, try to get him the ball and he made it work."TURN IT OVERIt's hard to determine whether the 49ers are worse at creating turnovers or committing them. San Francisco ranks last in the league with three takeaways through seven games — tied for the fewest at this point in the season since the 1970 merger — and has committed the most with 18. The Niners have committed 14 turnovers since their last takeaway on Sept. 30 against the Chargers. Beathard has thrown seven interceptions and lost three fumbles in four starts."It's inexcusable," coach Kyle Shanahan said. "It's impossible to win in this league when you turn the ball over like we are and you when don't get any."LOOKING AHEADThe Rams barely had time to celebrate this victory before fielding questions about what comes next. Los Angeles is starting a tough four-week stretch that starts with a home game against Aaron Rodgers and Green Bay next week, followed by a trip to New Orleans to face Drew Brees and the Saints, a home game against Seattle, then a game in Mexico City against Patrick Mahomes and Kansas City."I think we just have to keep building off of today's game," cornerback Troy Hill said. "It's one of those things that we've been waiting for, and so now we just have to keep on stringing it together."BREIDA'S HEALTHBreida has shown good sparks as the team's main running back with 445 yards rushing and an NFL-best 6.5 yards per carry. But the second-year back has struggled to stay healthy as he has been hampered by shoulder, knee and ankle injuries. He was limited to five carries against the Rams after rolling his ankle but might need some time off to fully heal."I tried to keep on playing," he said. "I have to be smart and not hurt my team at the same time. If I can't go out there and go 100 percent, I have to let the guys that can do it."

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