Oakland Raiders: Five Bold-ish Predictions For The 2018 Season

Oakland Raiders (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
Oakland Raiders (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images) /
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Raiders Will Make The Playoffs

Everybody from the Vegas oddsmakers, to the sports media talking heads, to a lot of fans, have already written off this

Raiders season as a lost one. Nobody gave the Raiders much of a chance to make any noise before the Mack deal, and now that he’s been sent to Chicago, they think it’ll be even worse. Colin Cowherd even described Oakland’s coming season as a “dumpster fire.”

Las Vegas Raiders
Las Vegas Raiders /

Las Vegas Raiders

The people who think they’ll finish above .500 are few and far between, and the people who think they’ve got a legit shot at making the postseason are even fewer than that.

While Mack’s presence will definitely be missed on defense, the idea that his trade doomed the entire season, and killed any shot they had at the postseason, is quite frankly, pretty ludicrous. It’s also a massive disservice to the 53 men on Oakland’s current roster who work their tails off to be solid, complete football players, and win some games.

And last we checked, Mack wsan’t playing on the side of the ball responsible for putting points on the board. To say the Raiders season is down the drain because Mack was dealt, is basically discounting and insulting the contributions of Carr and the offense.

The AFC is wide open at the moment, with no team (other than New England) who should be penciled in as a playoff team. Pittsburgh should be up there, but we don’t know what they’ll look like without Le’Veon Bell, or when he’ll even return to the team.

Other than those two teams, the playoff slots in the AFC are up for grabs – including the AFC West title.

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With a rookie quarterback (and the inevitable growing pains), of having Patrick Mahomes and his one career regular seasons start under center, you figure that Kansas City is going to have an up and down year.

Denver finally parted ways with Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch, rolling in with Case Keenum as the starter – a guy with a lot to prove to show he’s not just a flash in the pan, and can be the kind of quarterback he looked to be in Minnesota last season – we’re not convinced he will.

Los Angeles will be good, and at present, are favored to win the AFC West – but, stranger things have happened, and this is The Chargers, after all. Bad things usually seem to follow them around. But, if the Raiders are going to have a chance to claim a division title that’s eluded them since the last time Gruden stalked the sidelines.

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Although the Chargers are the favorite to win the AFC West this year, there is ample reason to believe the Raiders can make enough noise to take the division. And if not that, then to claim a Wild Card spot.

This is a talented roster, even without Mack. Armed with a solid ground game, a good pasing game, and a defense that has the potential to be solid, they have a legit shot to make the playoffs this year.