The Oakland Raiders (2-3) take on the undefeated Kansas City Chiefs (5-0) on Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium in a game that is sure to heighten the already intense rivalry between the two teams.
What are some issues the Raiders will have to face in this week’s matchup? The loss of running back Darren McFadden didn’t stop Oakland from beating the San Diego Chargers, but his return for this weekend’s game is still questionable. This could pose a problem for the Raiders, as McFadden is one of their stronger players.
Although the Raiders still have some improvements to make before competing with the better NFL teams, for the first time in several years, Oakland seems to be making favorable moves. What has been one of the major factors of Oakland’s success this season? Quarterback Terrelle Pryor, who is exceeding expectations, completing 68.3 percent of his passes. Sunday’s game could come down to how well the Chief’s defense can stop Pryor.
What are some ways the Raiders could improve their chances of winning? Several players in Oakland’s backfield are currently banged up (McFadden – hamstring injury, Marcel Reece, full back – knee injury). With all the injuries the Raiders are seeing in their backfield, the team could benefit from letting Terrelle Pryor have a little more freedom with his legs. He has an uncanny ability to dart around the field and avoid certain tackles that other quarterbacks would fall prey to.
Of course, the Kansas City Chiefs are a force to be reckoned with. Both their defense and offense have performed exceptionally this year, and quarterback Alex Smith has led his team to an undefeated season so far. What the Oakland Raiders lack in skill they must make up for in perseverance and teamwork. If the Raiders can avoid the technical errors that seem to plague them, they may able to overturn the Chiefs.
The Raiders have not lost in Kansas City since 2006 and will hopefully continue this tradition on Sunday.