The 0-2 Raiders are desperately trying to snag their first win of this NFL season as the..."/> The 0-2 Raiders are desperately trying to snag their first win of this NFL season as the..."/> The 0-2 Raiders are desperately trying to snag their first win of this NFL season as the..."/>

Raiders Search for First Win of the Season Against Steelers

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The 0-2 Raiders are desperately trying to snag their first win of this NFL season as the Pittsburgh Steelers come to town to face off in Oakland. The Raiders can’t afford to lose the first three games of the year, especially in a division led by the 2-0 San Diego Chargers, and also the new powerhouse, Peyton Manning and his Denver Broncos. Historically speaking, the last time Oakland went down in its first three battles, it was in 2006 when they lost their first five matches, which resulted in a 2-14 season. And you know that the Raiders don’t want to go through a season like that again, but then again, who does?

Oakland is still struggling to get it’s offensive prowess back on track, as they’ve only reached the end zone twice this season. Their rushing game has also been awful thus far, and if you don’t believe me, just look at their NFL-worst 2.0 yards per carry. Star runningback Darren McFadden is back and healthy, but is still struggling to excel at the pace that the league knows he can. He rushed 11 times last game against the Dolphins, but only came away with 22 yards. And it won’t be any easier for them today, as they face a very experienced and veteran defensive regiment, but one that will be without arguably the best safety in the league, Troy Polamalu, and four-time Pro Bowl linebacker, James Harrison.

However, as dry as the Raiders’ offense has been, it’s going to be a lot harder to play defense against this Steelers team. They have an inordinate number of weapons in their arsenal, and look no further than two-time Super Bowl champion Ben Roethlisberger. who threw for 275 yards and three touchdowns the last time these two teams faced off, which was a 35-3 Pittsburgh blowout in 2010. This season, he’s already thrown for 520 yards and four touchdowns, and he’s got two incredibly talented wide receivers in Mike Wallace and Antonio Brown, who combined for 153 receving yards against the Jets.

Oakland will have an especially tough time guarding the Steelers due to the lack of depth in their defensive backfield. The Raiders’ top two cornerbacks, Ron Bartell (shoulder) and Shawntae Spencer (foot) are ruled out of the game today. With that said, veteran safety Michael Huff should be in for loads of plays at the cornerback position; and he says he’ll be up for anything: “If I’m out there at corner I’ll be ready, and if I’m out there at safety I’ll be ready”, said Huff.

He will probably be joined at the cornerback position with Pat Lee, who had a very tough time covering Brian Hartline last week, as the Dolphins wideout reeled in nine passes for a whopping 111 receving yards. One can only wonder, if the Raiders had a tough time guarding Brian Hartline, how in the world can they stop two of the most explosive and deadly  receivers in the league? I guess you’ll have to tune in to the game and find out for yourself, or you know,  just watch the SportsCenter highlights.

This afternoon’s game will also feature the NFL’s two youngest head coaches, with Dennis Allen turning 40 yesterday, and Mike Tomlin already being 40 years of age.