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Raiders Notes: Missed tackles concern Kiffin

DENVER -- The Raiders made shoring up the run defense an emphasis this offseason. But they have to tackle a whole lot better to do that.

The Raiders allowed 181 yards on 38 carries in Sunday's 23-20 loss to the Denver Broncos at Invesco Field at Mile High. Denver running back Travis Henry gained 128 yards on 26 carries, thanks largely to shoddy tackling by Oakland.

The Raiders had their moments when they were tough in the middle, but too many times defenders whiffed on runs to the outside.

"We've just got to get better at it," Raiders coach Lane Kiffin said. "We've got to work on it in practice. Poor tackling hurt us in the first week as well. We just have to obviously emphasize it."

The Raiders ranked 25th against the run last year and have allowed 289 rushing yards in two games while giving up 4.9 yards a run.

WELCOME BACK -- Raiders defensive tackle Gerard Warren faced the team that traded him last month.

Warren's sack for a safety helped spur the Raiders' second-half comeback from a 17-3 deficit to a 20-17 lead.

"It was a simple play we just had to go out and execute," Warren said. "I knew we had a sack; I just didn't know it was a safety."

Warren didn't make a big deal of playing in Denver, where he was credited with helping solidify the run defense in 2005 but wasn't a good fit in the Broncos' new scheme.

"I love the game of football," Warren said. "Whether it's in Denver or Oakland."

QUICK STRIKE -- Play halted at 2:50 p.m. local time because of the threat of lightning. The game was delayed for 25 minutes and resumed with 14:53 left in the second quarter.

"I looked up one time and saw lightning and said, 'We're about to postpone this game for a little while,' and sure enough it happened," Raiders running back LaMont Jordan said. "I don't think it changed momentum or did anything like that. It's just one of those things I've never been part of before, but it's part of the game."

Kiffin acted as if it were the start of the game and had players run through pregame drills before play resumed.

HELP FROM ABOVE -- The Broncos talked openly after their overtime win about how the spirits of deceased teammates Darrent Williams and Damien Nash were with them the last two weeks when they won games on last-second kicks, this one after Sebastian Janikowski clanked a long field goal off the left post.

"They probably put a little sprinkle dust on (the goal post) or blew the ball a little bit," safety Nick Ferguson said with a grin. "They were probably giving each other high-fives."

"I'm not sure which one Darrent had and which one Damien had," Shanahan said. "But obviously they're doing some work upstairs."

Williams was killed in a drive-by shooting on New Year's Day.

Nash died following a charity basketball game in St. Louis two months later.

The Broncos are wearing patches on their helmets with the numbers of both players.

CLASS OF 2006 -- Second-year linebacker Thomas Howard's interception and touchdown were the first of his career. Rookie defensive end Jay Richardson tipped the pass.

Last year's first-round pick, safety Michael Huff, was credited with a sack when he ran Denver quarterback Jay Cutler out of bounds for no gain. It was Huff's first career sack. He doesn't have an interception.

INJURIES -- Defensive end Derrick Burgess left the game in the fourth quarter with a right calf injury Kiffin said would be evaluated today. Fullback Oren O'Neal left the game with an undisclosed injury. Kiffin declined to identify any other injured players. ... Among the Raiders' inactive players were receiver Mike Williams (coach's decision) and center Jeremy Newberry (hamstring).

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