Raiders vs Chiefs
The Raiders (2-9) venture back home to take on the Chiefs (9-2). With the recent news that running back Kareem Hunt has been released by the team, will the Raiders be able to take advantage. The Chiefs are coming off a bye week and after losing their superstar running back may struggle as a team. Can they continue their offensive dominance?
Raiders Chiefs 17 (30th) Points per game 36.7 (2nd) 238.9 (18th) Passing yards per game 318.5 (3rd) 99.4 (25th) Rushing yards per game 115.8 (14th) 29.7 (30th) Points allowed per game 26.7 (28th) 238.6 (15th) Passing yards per game 297.2 (32nd) 151.4 (32nd) Rushing yards per game 117.5 (20th)
Points per game
Passing yards per game
Rushing yards per game
Points allowed per game
Passing yards per game
Rushing yards per game
First Glance :
The Raiders offensive line struggled yet again as they allowed quarterback Derek Carr to be sacked three times; during one of those sacks he coughed the ball up to linebacker Terrell Suggs. The quarterback was decimated, throwing for under 200 yards again and only adding one touchdown with one interception. Carr and the offense will face a much easier defensive unit in the Chiefs, who allow the most passing yards per game. Something could be said that defense has been susceptible to the pass due to the offense putting opposing teams in pass only situations - the exact scenario they will create sunday. Carr, in a looming blowout, may very well have his best statistical game of the season. Running backs Doug Martin and Jalen Richard continue to split duties. Although Deandre Washington will cut into both of their workload. The three have been less than spectacular. Martin finally scored his first touchdown of the year in the losing effort against the Ravens and will continue to carry the load. Richard faded away into the game plan against the Ravens; it’s time to critique the coaching staff for not utilizing him more. This decision could stem from the thought of potentially saving Richard for future seasons. These backs will face the 20th ranked defense in yards allowed. The Raiders also continue to trot out the most disheveled group of receivers in Jordy Nelson, Seth Roberts and Marcell Ateman. Rookie Marcell Ateman has been targeted 15 times in his first two games of the season; with the Raiders sure to be down, his time to shine may continue. The Chiefs will potentially have Pro Bowl safety Eric Berry back from injury, who would surely add a defensive boost to the league's worst defensive squad against the pass. Jared Cook continues to be the Raiders best chance to score and move the ball, and the 30 year old tight end would like to avoid a Berry return as much as possible.
The loss of Kareem Hunt is substantial, however the Chiefs have one of the best quarterbacks in the game in Patrick Mahomes. The potential MVP ventures to the Coliseum for the first time as a starter and will undoubtedly take advantage of the porous Raiders defense. The Chiefs own the 10th best offensive line according to Pro Football Focus and will have a light day against the Raiders developing pass rush. The Raiders are activating defensive tackle Justin Ellis, who ranked 24th last year out of 133 qualifying players. Although they will be without Hunt, backup and former starter Spencer Ware is more than capable of carrying the load. It is fair to bring up however, Ware has not seen a starting work load since he was replaced by the now released Hunt. The Chiefs will likely depend on their young quarterback early in hopes of mitigating the loss of running back talent. Wide receiver Tyreek Hill has his eyes set on the juiciest matchup of the season while fellow wideout Sammy Watkins will miss the contest, allowing for Chris Conley to assume the second receiver role. Elite tight end Travis Kelce will be facing the worst linebacker coverage group week in and week out in the NFL. Even while missing a superstar, the Chiefs offense will continue to roll against a Raiders defensive unit who will be reeling before halftime.
START or SIT
Carr- The Raiders will be forced to air it out. He may commit turnovers but he will also throw for the most touchdowns he has all year.
Mahomes- Off a bye against a terrible defense he is a must start and potentially QB1 this week.
Doug Martin- I’ve been saying to bench Martin for a few weeks straight to mixed results. After coming off his first touchdown last week while facing a susceptible defense he gains RB2/Flex viability.
Richard- He’s not as involved in the game plan the last few weeks and can’t be considered as a play this week until his usage returns.
Spencer Ware - its assumed Ware will simply take over the role left by Hunt, in this scenario he is a must start from here on out. This week especially.
Jordy Nelson - This may be the only week left that Nelson will have WR3/Flex appeal, as He led the receivers in snaps against the Ravens. This game will provide more opportunity for the veteran.
Marcell Ateman- He was targeted ten times last game but only came away with three catches against the second best pass defense in the league. The Raiders look like they want to force it to Ateman and see what they have in the rookie.
Tyreek Hill - The cheetah will run free against the Raiders defense. Although the Raiders are just about average against the pass this year the Chiefs will feel no threat.
Chris Conley - he's a start in a high powered offense versus a terrible defense. Adding in the injury to Watkins, Conley will also look to tear up the Raiders defense.
Jared Cook - If Eric Berry plays I would reconsider starting Cook,if not he will be a fine play and will crack the TE top 12.
Kelce - Elite tight end. Should never be benched.