October 6, 2002 -- From history's standpoint, the Buffalo Bills' game with the Oakland Raiders was memorable because quarterback Drew Bledsoe set a team record. He had thrown 175 straight passes without an interception until he was picked off in this game. The old record of 172 was set by Jim Kelly in 1995.
But only the history majors in Ralph Wilson Stadium cared about that fact. They were more concerned with the way the Bills played. They dropped a 49-31 decision to the Oakland Raiders. Bledsoe finished 32 for 53 for 417 yards and three big intereceptions.
"It was another poor play on my part. ... I started off poor. ... It was a poor decision on my part," Bledsoe told The News' Mark Gaughan in describing some of the plays that went wrong.
However, you don't give up 49 points in a game without having some defensive problems, and the Bills had plenty of them that day. Rich Gannon of Oakland was 23 of 38 for 357 yards and three touchdowns. Four different Raiders receivers, including Tim Brown and Jerry Rice, caught at least four passes.
"You can't stop all the guys all the time," said Bills safety Pierson Prioleau, "but you have to stop some of the guys some of the time."
The Raiders' 49 points were the most allowed at home in Bills history at that point. Buffalo finished 27th in the league in points allowed that season, a key statistic as to why the team finished with an 8-8 record despite having a good offense.
--- Budd Bailey