After finishing the year with an atrocious 4-12 record, the Oakland Raiders are looking to bounce back and make some noise in the upcoming 2013-2014 season.
A few days ago their full schedule was released, so let’s take a look at each game and briefly discuss what they will bring.
Week 1: Sunday, September 8th at Indianapolis Colts
The Raiders will start their season against the rejuvenated Colts and young quarterback Andrew Luck. As a rookie, Luck led his team to a 11-5 record and a playoff berth last season.
It will be good for the Raiders to face a team with a talented quarterback in the season opener, as they have a new defensive unit waiting to prove themselves.
Week 2: Sunday, September 15th vs Jacksonville Jaguars
This should be a fun game for all NFL fans. The last time these two teams played last season, the game went to overtime and was a thriller throughout. Sebastian Janikowski ended up drilling the 40-yard game-winning field goal to save the day for the Raiders.
Also, newly acquired running back Rashad Jennings will be facing his former Jacksonville team, and it’s always fun to watch a player go against his old team.
Week 3: Monday, September 23rd at Denver Broncos
This will be the Raiders’ fist big game of the season. Monday Night Football, division rivals, Peyton Manning- the stage will be huge. Everybody will be watching the nationally televised game, and it will be a huge opportunity for the Raiders to make a new name for themselves.
If they can pull off the huge victory in Denver against Peyton Manning and his elite offense, then maybe NFL fans will have to rethink the Raiders.
Week 4: Sunday, September 29th vs Washington Redskins
The Raiders will get their first look at Robert Griffin III, and they need to make him look terrible.
The promising quarterback tore his ACL at the end of last season and has been rehabilitating hard to make it back to the field for opening night. Should he miss more time, the Raiders would catch a huge break if he sat out for this Week 4 matchup.
Week 5: Sunday, October 6th vs San Diego Chargers
Everyone always wants to beat their division rivals, and the Raiders and Chargers will feel no different about this game.
The Raiders and Chargers always go at it when they meet up and this game should be a dogfight. Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates will come to Oakland looking to trounc the young squad, but the Raiders and their revamped roster will be ready for the battle.
Week 6: Sunday, October 13th at Kansas City Chiefs
The Raiders will travel to Kansas City to face off against the Chiefs and their new quarterback Alex Smith.
It will be interesting to see how Smith will work into Kansas City’s offense with new head coach Andy Reid, but with Smith and Dwayne Bowe working the offense, fans should expect a shoe.
Tracy Porter and Mike Jenkins, the Raiders new cornerbacks, should be prepared for a solid performance.
Week 7: Bye Week
It’s always nice to get some rest. The Raiders will get their bye week near the midway point of the season.
Week 8: Sunday, October 27th vs Pittsburgh Steelers
Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers will visit the Raiders in Week 8 looking to avenge their loss in Oakland last season.
The Raiders pulled off the comeback and were able to beat Pittsburgh 34-31, as Janikowski drilled the game-winning field goal.
It will be interesting to see if the Raiders can keep up with the Steelers’ offense, who lost explosive wideout Mike Wallace in free agency this offseason. Wallace signed a mega-deal with the Miami Dolphins.
Week 9: Sunday, November 3rd vs the Philadelphia Eagles
The Raiders will have to play one of their best games of the year on this night, and their defense needs to be more prepared than ever.
Michael Vick and new head coach Chip Kelly will bring an explosive offensive game to the table, and when you pair that with speedy receivers like DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin, you’re in trouble.
Mike Jenkins and Tracy Porter will need to really step it up this game, as well as the rest of the Raiders squad.
Week 10: Sunday, November 10th at New York Giants
The Giants are an enigma of a team, so it will be hard to predict how this game will go. Their star receiver Victor Cruz remains unsigned, and if they don’t get anything resolved with him, then they’re in some big trouble. But you just know that Eli Manning will dig his team back from whatever hole to put up a good fight.
Matt Flynn (if chosen the starter) will be up against Justin Tuck and the Giants’ vicious defensive line, so this game will prove as a test for him that he can learn from and prove himself worthy too.
Week 11: Sunday, November 17th at Houston Texans
Matt Schaub, Arian Foster, and Andre Johnson. Uh oh. The Texans’ prolific offense will be a challenge for the Raiders to cover, but their defensive squad should be more than capable of completing the task.
With the new signing of future Hall of Fame safety Ed Reed, the Texans boast one of the hottest defenses in the league as well, and will be looking to torment the Raiders in every aspect.
Week 12: Sunday, November 24th vs Tennessee Titans
Running back Chris Johnson was able to put up some good games towards the end of last season, but he is looking for a completely fresh start. The previous season was miserable by Johnson’s standards, and if he is looking for vengeance in 2013-2014, then the Raiders should be ready for a tough game.
On the other hand, the Raiders offense should be able to put up some good numbers and put points on the board, as the Titans are not too strong of a defensive team.
Week 13: Thursday, November 28th at Dallas Cowboys
This Thanksgiving day matchup will be a great one, as the Raiders will look to beat the Cowboys who are led by quarterback Tony Romo, who just signed a long term extension with the team this offseason.
Dez Bryant and Miles Austin will look to compliment Romo nicely, but the Raiders’ secondary must be waiting for them.
Mike Jenkins will be playing against his former team, and it will be great to see how he does, as I am sure that he has the burning desire to defeat the team that ended up letting him go.
Week 14: Sunday, December 8th at New York Jets
The Jets are by far the most media-scrutinized team in the NFL and the future of their franchise remains unclear. Rex Ryan keeps saying his team will win the Super Bowl, and then they always end up falling short of that goal.
Mark Sanchez, Tim Tebow, who will the Raiders be facing this day? Nobody knows, but prepare for a crazy game that the Raiders will try and steal on the road.
Week 15: Sunday, December 15th vs Kansas City Chiefs
This time Alex Smith and company will come to Oakland to play their division rival.
Smith and Bowe are destined to make some noise in the Bay Area this night, just as Smith did with the 49ers so many times.
The Raiders will have their hands full, but should be prepared.
Week 16: Sunday, December 22nd at San Diego Chargers
Philip Rivers and his offense will look to give the Raiders a beating in their lethal attacks, but at this point of the season the Raiders defensive unit will be so locked in with each other that they will have the potential to stop any offense.
As always, this division rival matchup will be a good one, so make sure you tune in.
Week 17: Sunday, December 29th vs Denver Broncos
The Raiders last game of the 2013-2014 season will be up against yet another divison rival, the Denver Broncos.
Peyton Manning and the Broncos will be looking to end the regular season strong before they head into the postseason (they better make it).
The Raiders will likely be in a different spot but either way, whether they are fighting for playoff spot or just want to end the season strong, this Raiders squad will be playing their hearts out for their home crowd that has been so faithful to them over the years.
Tags: Oakland Raiders