This matchup looked a lot more appealing before the season started. It’s not like the Raiders are bad but they are clearly in a funk. Last week they lost to the lowly Chargers courtesy of a missed extra point by kicker Giorgio Tavecchio. That miss led to a last second field goal by the Chargers, dropping the Raiders to 2-4.
Things do not get any easier as they welcome the first place Chiefs. The Steelers beat them up last week. Le’Veon Bell was the battering ram of choice and he churned them to the tune of 179 yards and a touchdown. The Raiders were hopefully watching that game tape this week and look to mirror that gameplan.
Marshawn Lynch is not Le’Veon Bell but he is still more than capable at running at someone’s face over and over. The Raiders have one of the best offensive lines in football and even have Derek Carr back. They also added linebacker Navorro Bowman who is unlikely to play much if at all.
The Chiefs offense had a bad day last week. Alex Smith showed up but his supporting cast did not. Kareem Hunt has been electric every week, but last week came down to earth. He was nonexistent on the ground, rushing for only 21 yards, but made up for it with 89 yards receiving. Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill were relatively ineffective and to have success tonight that will have to change.
I think the Raiders wake up and play tight with their rivals. The Chiefs could still be bruised up from Sunday so the Raiders would be wise to be physical from the first whistle.
Prediction: Chiefs 17, Raiders 20