Another critical division game marks week 12 for the Oakland Raiders as they host their hated rival Kansas City Chiefs.
Subplot: Shaping NFL playoff picture
It’s typically towards the end of November that teams can really start to think about the NFL playoffs because the picture has truly begun to form. By the time they return home to face Kansas City in week 12, the Raiders will have capped a stretch in which six of the seven teams they play were playoff teams in 2013. There is little doubt how they emerge from that stretch will decide their postseason fate in 2014.
Don’t let Jamaal Charles win the game
Oakland knows that stopping one player won’t win them the game when the play the Chiefs that Sunday. On the other hand, they also know if they don’t stop him they will not only lose but possibly get blown out. That is what happened the last time they saw running back Jamaal Charles, who ripped through them for 215 total yards and scored five touchdowns, accounting for 35 of the Chiefs 56 points in the game. Safe to say that can’t happen again.
Another statistic to remember for the Raiders is what happened the last time they faced the dynamic pass rushing combination of Tamba Hali and Justin Houston. Oakland managed to score just seven points in the game and the tandem accounted for 3.5 sacks. Kansas City finished with nine on the afternoon. It’s safe to say all the pressure, literally and figuratively will be on tackles Donald Penn and Menelik Watson to keep quarterback Matt Schaub from getting pounded into the turf. A good way to do that is by giving them help as much as possible with tight ends and running backs.
Prediction: Raiders win 28-27