Oakland Raiders: Keys To Victory Over Denver Broncos

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Oct 4, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) is sacked by Chicago Bears defensive end Jarvis Jenkins (96) during the second half at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Protect Carr At All Costs

Derek Carr is going to be facing a pass rush unlike anything he’s seen so far this season. Led by veterans like DeMarcus Ware, Aqib Talib, Von Miller, and T.J. Ward, the Broncos lead the NFL in sacks with 18, and are third in the league in interceptions with six.

Denver’s pass rush is as ferocious as it is relentless. And it can make life for opposing quarterbacks miserable beyond belief.

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  • Oakland’s offensive line has been quietly developing into one of the better units in the league. They’ve given up just five sacks this season – good for a third place tie for fewest in the NFL. And they’ve done a terrific job of opening holes for Oakland’s running backs, allowing them to average more than four yards a carry.

    The offensive line suffered a setback last week against Chicago though, when they allowed two of those five sacks, and Oakland’s running game was pretty well bottled up. Simply put, the Raiders’ offensive line is going to need to bounce back in a big way this week against Denver.

    Denver attacks from everywhere and they do a good job of keeping contain and collapsing the pocket. They’re a formidable unit that doesn’t have a lot of glaring weaknesses.

    The Raiders though, have talent who can find the cracks and crevasses in a defense and exploit them. But for those playmakers to be able to do that, the offensive line is going to need to step it up and protect Carr at all costs. They’re going to have to give him time to go through his reads and find the open target.

    It all starts up front. And this promises to be their biggest challenge yet. For the Raiders to have a chance in this game, they’re going to have to rise to the occasion.

    Next: Brains and Brawn