ARLINGTON, Texas — It didn’t take DeSean Jackson long to get comfortable at AT&T Stadium on Thursday afternoon, which should have come as no surprise given his previous success there.
Jackson toasted man-coverage from Jourdan Lewis and broke through an attempted tackle by former San Diego State star Damontae Kazee before racing down the left sideline for a 56-yard touchdown on the Raiders’ opening drive Thursday.
He drew a pass interference in the end zone later in the first quarter to set up the Raiders’ second touchdown and made several key grabs in the second half to help them snap a three-game losing streak with a 36-33 overtime victory.
Jackson finished with three catches for 102 yards and a touchdown. His impact was far more significant.
“One thing he can still do is run,” interim coach Rich Bisaccia cracked after the game. “It was fun watching him. You can see him getting more and more comfortable with what we’re asking him to do.”
Success against the Cowboys, especially in their building, is nothing new for Jackson.
He entered the game with 58 catches for 1,228 yards and five touchdowns against the Cowboys, the most receptions and yardage he has accumulated against any team in the NFL.
It was also Jackson’s fourth touchdown of 50 or more yards at AT&T Stadium, tied with Dez Bryant and Amari Cooper for most receiving scores of longer than 50 yards in the building that opened in 2009.
Bryant and Cooper both played their home games there with the Cowboys.
“It’s fun to get creative with ways to get him down the field and use his speed,” quarterback Derek Carr said of the 34-year-old receiver. “That threat is always there. I don’t even know how old he is, but he can still fly. It sure is fun to throw him the ball. I’m glad he had a big day. I felt it was coming.”
Jackson now has 34 touchdowns of 50 or more yards in his career, just two behind all-time leader Jerry Rice.
He also has 46 total receptions of 50 yards or longer, three ahead of Randy Moss for the most in the NFL since 1991.
Jackson wasn’t involved often, but the impact was massive on the occasions the Raiders did get him involved.
He was targeted on a screen play late in the third, but it was blown up immediately when Micah Parsons got in the backfield and forced Carr to throw the ball at Jackson’s feet to avoid an intentional grounding call or sack.
On the next play, Jackson drew a pass interference call on Anthony Brown that kept alive a drive that would end with a field goal to extend the Raiders’ lead.
“We hit that big play. It’s exciting for us and for him. But he came up big for us on some very crucial down and distances,” Carr said.
Jackson kickstarted the Raiders’ opening drive of the fourth quarter with a 16-yard reception that led to yet another field goal.
Then Jackson came up with a 30-yard catch-and-run on the first play of a drive with 2:34 remaining in the fourth quarter of a tied game to get the ball to the Dallas 40-yard line.
The Raiders would not get another first down on the drive, but Daniel Carlson connected on a 56-yard field goal to put them back in front, only to have the Cowboys answer and force overtime.
Jackson had just one pass thrown in his direction in his first two games with the Raiders. His one catch resulted in a crippling fumble against the Chiefs.
Carr officially targeted him four times on Thursday, not including the penalties.
Jackson was the kind of difference-maker the Raiders hoped to acquire when they signed him three weeks ago.