SAN DIEGO, CA - NOVEMBER 10: Wide receiver Denarius Moore #17 of the Oakland Raiders carries the ball agaisnt the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on November 10, 2011 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

Raiders vs. Vikings: Raiders Defense, Carson Palmer Lead Raiders to 27-21 Victory, First Place in AFC West

The Oakland Raiders scored 24 early unanswered points to fend off the Minnesota Vikings 27-21 at the Metrodome. For more on the game and the team in general, go to Silver And Black Pride, SB Nation's Oakland Raiders blog.

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Week 11 NFL Scores: Raiders Gain Ground on Chargers, Chiefs; Broncos Keep Pace

This week was a busy week for the Raiders and the rest of the AFC West. We learned a lot about each of the teams, but it is still difficult to tell how the division will end up as all the teams have several very difficult games remaining on their schedule.

Raiders 27, Vikngs 21: This game looked for all intents and purposes like a blowout, and it should have been, but the Vikings stormed back in the fourth quarter to pull within six. However, the Raiders defense clamped down and would let them get no closer. We may criticize the Raiders for playing extremely conservatively in the second half in only scoring three points and running the ball too much when Carson Palmer was having a lot of success throwing the ball, but we also have to remember the Vikings were shut out in both the second and third quarters and were only given new hope by a very rare Michael Bush fumble.

Other than that, the Raiders utterly dominated the Vikings and squeezed the life from them with straight ahead power football. The Raiders gained 162 yards rushing against a top-flight rush defense. Should the Raiders make the playoffs, they will face nothing but good rush defenses, so it's a good sign that they can run on anyone no matter how good the rush defense is. However, their prevent style will not work in the second half against teams better than the Vikings on offense, which is to say, almost all the teams. It is a concern that simply must be addressed by the coaching staff.

Broncos 17, Jets 13: This was a sloppy, poorly-executed, boring game from the start until the very last drive. The Broncos defense, Von Miller in particular, looked extremely good, but I'm uncertain how much of that is on the Broncos and how much is due to the Jets being criminally overrated. Mark Sanchez was simply dreadful and the Jets scored their lone touchdown on a fumble recovery by a lineman. The Jets are nowhere near as good as they think they are, or as the media seems to think they are.

The Broncos, on the other hand, are developing a pattern here. The pattern is that of a smothering, opportunistic defense and a grinding, tricky rush offense. Tim Tebow may be considered inaccurate if you just go by the numbers, but the reality is that his receivers were dropping his passes left and right when they were on target. The NFL Network crew had the gall to ask Tebow what he says to his receivers after he "doesn't get them the ball". He does get them the ball, they just can't catch and anyone who watched the game on Thursday night could plainly see that. Apparently the men paid to analyze the game neglected to watch it. That being said, we all know about the Tebow heroics on the last drive and how the game turned out. The Broncos have a difficult schedule the rest of the way, with the next two games on the road and then a Dec. 18 meeting with the Patriots. The next two games will tell us much about Tim Tebow's future.


Bears 31, Chargers 20: This was the fifth straight loss for the Chargers and the fifth straight win for the Bears. Philip Rivers continued his pattern of throwing for a lot of yards and a lot of interceptions. The Chargers' running game was nonexistent, with Ryan Mathews only rushing 13 times for 37 yards and a lost fumble. Rivers was forced to take to the air, and the results were predictable against a stingy Bears defense. Rivers' boneheaded plays (like trying to throw a ball away, only to have it fly directly into the arms of a defender five yards in bounds) made what had been a close game into an absolute laugher. The Bears looked really good until Jay Cutler broke his thumb chasing down a defender on an interception return, and then Cutler handed off almost exclusively. The Bears still didn't reach 100 yards rushing even under those extreme circumstances.

The Bears played a Raider-style conservative offense and a prevent defense late in the game, but unlike the Raiders, they have the defense to be successful with that strategy. It will be an interesting game when the Bears play the Raiders in Oakland without Cutler this Sunday.


Patriots 34, Chiefs 3: The first half of this game was a slugfest, with both teams looking stout defensively, Kansas City perhaps more so. They sacked Tom Brady three times in the first quarter alone. But then halftime adjustments were made, and the Patriots came out and absolutely dismantled the Chiefs. They intercepted Tyler Palko three times and Tom Brady hooked up with Rob Gronkowski four times for 96 yards and two spectacular touchdowns.

So which is the real Chiefs team, the first half or the second half? I'm inclined to think it's closer to the first half from a defensive standpoint and the second half from an offensive standpoint, The Chiefs got close to the end zone on a few occasions but Palko was not able to get them in for a score. I imagine they will have that sort of trouble the rest of the year, particularly against teams with a strong pass rush. Matt Cassel may not have been an upper-crust NFL QB, but he was extremely important to the Chiefs and without him they are slightly below mediocre.

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Raiders vs. Vikings: Raiders Cut it Close Again, Fail to Score in Fourth Quarter Again

The Oakland Raiders, led by Carson Palmer and Michael Bush, jumped out to an early lead against the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday. After falling behind 7-0 in the first quarter, the Raiders put up 24 unanswered points on the Vikings to enter half time with a 24-7 lead. The Raiders held off the Vikings in the third quarter and increased their lead with a short Sebastian Janikowski field goal as the third quarter wound down to an end.

After three quarters, the Raiders had a comfortable 20 point lead and looked like they would be able to coast to yet another victory on the road. Then memories of the week two loss to the Buffalo Bills started to creep into the consciousness of the Raider Nation. The Vikings scored early in the fourth quarter, bringing themselves to within two scores of the Raiders. That is when things started to get really scary for the Raiders.

The Raiders got the ball back after the Vikings touchdown and began to march down the field. The Raiders stalled at the Minnesota 31 yard line, well within Janikowski's field goal range, even with his injured hamstring. It looked like the Raiders would go back up by three scores and all but put the game away. Then Janikowski's field goal was blocked.

The Vikings immediately began to drive down the field. It looked as though the Vikings would put points on the board for sure, until Stanford Routt made a big time interception in the end zone. Again, the Raiders looked as though they had finally put the game away. That is, until Michael Bush fumbled the ball four plays later, giving the Vikings excellent field position. It took Christian Ponder one play as he hit his tight end Visanthe Shiancoe for a 37 yard field goal.

The Raiders would get the ball back two more times in the final five minutes of the game but failed to put any points on the board and allowed the Vikings to stay in the game all of the way to the end. The Raiders have not scored any fourth quarter points since week five.

The Raiders scored a field goal with ten minutes remaining in their week five victory over the Houston Texans but still allowed the Texans to pull within one score and gave them a chance to win at the end of the game. The Raiders have failed to score in the fourth quarter of the last five games they played. If they want to make the playoffs, and more importantly, do well in the playoffs, the Raiders need to find a way to start scoring fourth quarter points and put opponents away.

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Raiders Vs. Vikings Recap By The Numbers: Michael Bush, Carson Palmer Lead Oakland To Win

The Oakland Raiders improved their road record to 4-1 on Sunday with a 27-21 win over the Minnesota Vikings. Quarterback Carson Palmer scored a rushing touchdown and connected with Chaz Schilens on an 11 yard touchdown pass. He finished the game 17-for-23 with 164 passing yards and no interceptions.

Running back Michael Bush led all rushers with 109 yards on 30 carries and a touchdown, as it was the running game that the Raiders leaned on. Darrius Heyward-Bey led Raiders receivers with 43 yards on four catches, although Matt Giorgano returned an interception 42 yards for Oakland.

Kicker Sebastian Janikowski was two-for-three on field goal attempts with a long of 29.

Oakland defense held Vikings rushers to 124 yards and recorded five sacks and an additional five quarterback hits. Tommy Kelly and Desmond Bryant recorded two sacks each. Lito Sheppard had six solo tackles, including a sack.

For all news and information regarding the Oakland Raiders, you can always visit Silver and Black Pride.

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Darrius Heyward-Bey Injury Update: Oakland Raiders Receiver Flies Home With Team [PHOTO]

The Oakland Raiders were victorious on Sunday over the hometown Minnesota Vikings, but they finished the game without wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey, who was stretchered off the field in the second half after taking a bit hit from Cedric Griffin.

Early indicators were positive, as Heyward-Bey was expected to fly home with the team. According to a tweet sent out by teammate Louis Murphy Jr., that's exactly what happened.

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via Louis Murphy

According to Murphy, Heyward-Bey asked him to send the photo out so Raiders fans could see he is doing well. Although he is in a neck brace, his flying home with the team is a wonderful indicator that things are not terribly serious regarding his injury at this time. More will be known in the coming week, but it is good news that he appears to be feeling well enough at the moment.

For all Oakland Raiders news and information, you can always visit Silver and Black Pride.

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Darrius Heyward-Bey Injury Update: Raiders WR Leaves Hospital, Will Fly Home With Team

The Oakland Raiders suffered a scare when Darrius Heyward-Bey went down in the second half after suffering what appeared to be a big injury on a hit from Minnesota Vikings defender Cedric Griffin. Heyward-Bey spent a few minutes on the ground before eventually being put on a stretcher and carted off the field.

It's looking like the early indicators are positive for the Raiders. Paul Gutierrez of Comcast Sports Net Bay Area reports.

After the game, Raiders officials told Comcast SportsNet's Kate Longworth that Heyward-Bey was transported to Hennepin County Medical Center for precautionary measures and X-rays.

Coach Hue Jackson later said that Heyward-Bey never lost consciousness and said he would join the team on its charter flight home Sunday night.

It's a good sign that the Raiders WR is going home with the team. It could indicate that either the injury isn't serious or that it won't cause too much of a problem for him to eventually return to the team.

If Heyward-Bey has to miss significant playing time, this will cause another hampering of an already hampered Oakland offense. The Raiders are already struggling with injures to Darren McFadden and Jacoby Ford, so Heyward-Bey's health is of paramount importance to the team.

To discuss the Heyward-Bey injury with the Raiders, go to Silver and Black Pride.

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Raiders vs. Vikings, NFL Scores: Raiders Defense, Carson Palmer Leads Raiders to 27-21 Victory

The Oakland Raiders came to the Metrodome looking to keep hold of first place in the AFC West, while the Vikings were simply looking for a win after their beat down on Monday night against the Packers. Minnesota looked confident early, but the loss of Adrian Peterson to injury and numerous turnovers were too much to overcome as the Raiders came out victorious by the score of 27-21.

Adrian Peterson began the game with a 12 yard TD run for the Vikings, but left late in the first quarter with an ankle injury and did not return. That started the momentum shift for the Raiders, who would go on to score 24 unanswered points from there, including a 11 yard touchdown reception from Chaz Schillens, a two yard Michael Bush TD and a one yard Carson Palmer Rush TD to push the Raiders ahead in the first half.  

Both Bush and Palmer were brusing the Vikings today as Bush finished with 109 yards on 30 carries including a TD and a fumble, while Palmer was 17 for 23 for 164 yards including a passing and rushing touchdown. But the Raiders defense were the real game changers today, finishing with 5 turnovers forced (3 interceptions, 2 fumbles) including two of the three picks inside the Raiders 25 yard line.  Both teams had their fare share of penalties as well, finishing with 12 for 117 yards for Oakland and 9 for 50, with one penalty killing a Percy Harvin touchdown catch in the first quarter.

Christian Ponder finished the game with three interceptions but still made a valiant effort at a second half comeback. He found Percy Harvin for a 26 yard touchdown reception early in the fourth quarter, his first TD catch of the year, followed by a one yard pass to Kyle Rudolph after a Michael Bush fumble to make it 27-21. In the end they couldn't comeback though, as the Raiders early lead and numerous turnovers sealed their fate this Sunday. 

With the win the Raiders move to 6-4, solely atop the AFC West. 

For more on the Raiders, head over to Silver and Black Pride. 

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Darrius Heyward-Bey Injury: Raiders WR Taken Off Field On Stretcher [VIDEO]

As the Oakland Raiders take on the Minnesota Vikings at the Metrodome, wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey took a vicious hit from Vikings cornerback Cedric Griffin, leaving him on the field for several minutes and eventually needing to be carted off the field by medical personnel.

The hit itself didn't seem to be overly devastating at first glance, but was enough to knock off his helmet and leave him dazed and confused. He tried to get up at first, but wisely laid himself down and waited for the medical staff. After a couple of minutes of laying motionless, medical personel brought in the stretcher and cart to take him off the field.

Heyward-Bey was seen moving his leg when being put on the stretcher, as well as raising his arm and wiggling his fingers, which is a great sign. He has been quite the spark to their offense this year, hauling in 27 catches for 434 yards and a touchdown so far this year.

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Raiders vs. Vikings, Score Update: Raiders Add Field Goal, Extend Lead to 27-14

The Oakland Raiders are taking care of business up at the Metronome through three quarters, adding another Sebastian Janikowski field goal in the period to extend their lead to 27-13 early in the fourth quarter. 

Janikowski added his second field goal of the day with about a minute left in the third quarter, a 26 yard shot to cap off a seven play, 16 yard drive started after another Christian Ponder interception. Ponder has really been struggling thus far, completing 13 of 20 of his passes for 120 yards, including a TD to Percy Harvin early in the fourth quarter, his first TD reception of the year. 

As for the Raiders offense, Carson Palmer has been slicing up the Vikings secondary, going 13 for 18 for 126 yards thus far, making it look easy along the way. He's got a passing and rushing touchdown already, and is looking to finish up the Vikes early in the fourth. Micheal Bush has 80 yards on 20 carries including a touchdown as well. 

Adrian Peterson continues to sit out for the Vikings, who left the game in the first quarter with an ankle injury. 

For more on the Raiders, head over to Silver and Black Pride.  

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Adrian Peterson Injury Update: Toby Gerhart In As Vikings RB Waits On Sideline

Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson appeared to injure his ankle in the first quarter of the Raiders-Vikings game and it appears more and more likely that he could spend the rest of the game on the sideline. Peterson was carted back to the locker room after the injury and Toby Gerhart replaced him for the rest of the first half.

Peterson did not come out with the team to start the second half, but he did make his way out shortly after the half began. Peterson was limping a bit and the Vikings continued to stick with Gerhart on their first offensive drive after the Raiders punted. Peterson had an x-ray that indicated no broken bones, but given the current 24-7 deficit, it would be surprising to see the Vikings roll him back out there. If the Raiders do not build on the lead, maybe he makes a return, but if the Raiders continue their roll, the Vikings will probably play it safe with AP.

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Raiders vs. Vikings Score Update: Raiders Score 24 Unanswered, Take 24-7 Lead At Halftime

With running back Adrian Peterson suffering an ankle injury late in the first quarter and a big Christian Ponder interception to begin the second, the momentum has shifted heavily in the Oakland Raiders favor against the Minnesota Vikings in the second quarter, with the Raiders scoring 24 unanswered points to take a 24-7 lead at the Metrodome.

Carson Palmer came out hot after the interception, leading a 7 play 53 yard drive capped off with this beautiful 11 yard TD pass to Chaz Schillens:

The Raiders would strike again with another big drive capping an 8 play, 57 yard drive with a two yard Michael Bush TD run to push their lead to 17-7. The Vikings would end up coughing up the ball on the ensuing kickoff with a Lorenzo Booker fumble, setting up another Raiders touchdown, this time with a Carson Palmer one yard rush TD to take the 27-7 lead into the locker room.

Carson Palmer finished the first half 11 for 14 with a rushing and passing touchdown for 109 yards and a solid 122 QB rating, continuing his great play from last week's victory over San Diego. Michael Bush has 49 yards on 11 carries, while Kevin Boss has four catches four 30 yards.

As for Ponder, he's managed only 67 yards of passing, though he's 9 for 11 thus far with an interception. Adrian Peterson's early TD will likely be his only mark on the game as we was carted off the field with a lower leg injury and is questionable to return.

For more on the Raiders, head over to Silver and Black Pride.

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Adrian Peterson Injury Update: Vikings RB Questionable To Return [VIDEO]

The Minnesota Vikings entered the second quarter with a 7-3 lead on the Oakland Raiders, but they find themselves in a bit of trouble as they have lost running back Adrian Peterson due to a lower leg injury. Peterson put together a solid run on the play but had a defender roll up on his left leg. After the injury trainers were seen working on his lower left leg. He was then taken to the locker room on a cart.

There is no word on the specifics of the injury, but Peterson is reportedly questionable to return. You can view video below of the play in question. Peterson hopped through the hole and a defender had his right leg, pulling off his show. That slowed down Peterson enough for a second defender to grab hold of him for the tackle. As Peterson was tackled you can see him roll over on his left leg. We will have more updates as info comes along.

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Raiders vs. Vikings Score Update: Raiders Trail 7-3 After First Quarter

The Oakland Raiders have had their hands full thus far with the Minnesota Vikings' Adrian Peterson in the first quarter at the Metrodome, riding him throughout the first period to a 7-3 lead over the Silver and Black. 

Sebastian Janikowski got the the Raiders on the board with about a minute left in the quarter with a 29 yard field goal after a nice drive from Carson and Co. Palmer was 4 for 5 for 29 yards in the first quarter, while fullback Marcel Reece currently leads the Raiders on the ground with 2 carries for 25 yards. Tight End Kevin Boss leads the team with three catches for 19 yards. 

Adrian Peterson already has six carries for 26 yards in the first quarter, including a 12 yard scamper for the lone TD scored thus far. Christian Ponder is moving the ball well, finishing the period 5 for 6 for 31 yards while Percy Harvin has two catches for 19 yards. A penalty erased a 35 yard Percy Harvin TD already, so the Raiders should be thankful they are where they are. 

For more on the Raiders, head over to Silver and Black Pride.

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Raiders Vs. Vikings Injury Report: Inactives Include Darren McFadden, Jacoby Ford

The Oakland Raiders and Minnesota Vikings released their week 11 inactive lists and there are no surprises for the Silver and Black. As expected, Darren McFadden and Jacoby Ford are both inactive for Sunday's game. Michael Bush will get the start at running back, while Denarius Moore will likely be the primary beneficiary of Ford's absence.

Beyond Moore, it will be interesting to see how Carson Palmer and the Raiders spread the ball around in the passing game. Darrius Heyward-Bey has been a non-factor since Carson Palmer took over, in spite of being the team's most consistent receiver through the first month and a half of the season.

The most significant "inactive" for the Vikings is not even listed. Cornerback Antoine Winfield was placed on injured reserve earlier this week, which leaves them short-handed at cornerback. Add in the team-imposed suspension of Chris Cook, and it opens up the secondary considerably for the Raiders passing attack. 

Oakland Raiders Inactives: QB Terelle Pryor, QB Jason Campbell, WR Jacoby Ford, RB Darren McFadden, CB Chris Johnson, FB Manase Tonga, OL Bruce Campbell

Minnesota Vikings Inactives: CB Chris Cook, S Husain Abdullah, LB Erin Henderson, OL Anthony Herrera, OL Demarcus Love, CB Stephen Burton, DE D'Aundre Reed

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Carson Palmer Fantasy Projection: Oakland Raiders QB In Line For Huge Day

The Oakland Raiders travel north to Minnesota to face the Vikings in a must-win game as the Raiders look to maintain their one game lead over the Denver Broncos. The Raiders are dealing with some big injuries, including Darren McFadden and Jacoby Ford, both of whom are dealing with foot sprains.

The Raiders face a Vikings defense that is incredibly banged up and will be without lead cornerback Antoine Winfield, which opens up the passing game to a certain extent. Although Carson Palmer has dealt with a fair amount of interceptions in his brief time with the Raiders, he has been playing extremely well otherwise and is developing into a strong fantasy start week in and week out.

The Raiders will remain a power rushing team, but Palmer to Denarius Moore could develop into a very solid connection against Minnesota. If you do not have an Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady or Cam Newton, Carson Palmer is a very respectable start.

For more on the Raiders, check out Silver & Black Pride. For more on fantasy football, check out Fake Teams.

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Raiders Vs. Vikings: Time, TV Schedule, Radio And More

The Oakland Raiders seek their second straight win under new quarterback Carson Palmer when they play the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday. The Raiders are coming off of an important 24-17 division win over the San Diego Chargers last weekend and can maintain their AFC West lead over the Chargers, Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs with a victory this week.

The Raiders will have to do so without running back Darren McFadden, who is out with a foot injury. Michael Bush will make his third straight start as running back for the Riaders.

Following is general and TV information about Sunday's game:

Game Date/Time: Sunday, November 20; 10:00 a.m. PT

Location: Mall of America Field; Minneapolis, Minnesota

Records: Raiders (5-4); Vikings (2-7)

TV: CBS. Announcers: Kevin Harlan (play-by-play); Solomon Wilcots (color analyst).

Radio: KITS LIVE 105.3 FM. Announcers: Greg Papa, Tom Flores

Spanish Radio: KCNL 104.9. Announcers: Fernando Arias, Ambrosio Rico

Betting Line: According to OddsShark, the Raiders are one-point underdogs.

Online Coverage: Check out Silver and Black Pride for your Raiders fill. Click though to the Daily Norseman for more news on the Vikings.

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Darren McFadden, Jacoby Ford Injury Update: Oakland Raiders RB, WR Out For Vikings Game

The Oakland Raiders will be without a couple of key players in Sunday's game against the Minnesota Vikings. Fortunately for the Raiders, this may actually end up being good news.

According to Jerry McDonald of Inside Bay Area, running back Darren McFadden and wide receiver Jacoby Ford will both sit out the game against the Vikings, against whom the Raiders are favored. Taking McFadden's place is Michael Bush, who has been on fire lately. Taiwan Jones will act as his backup and likely get a handful of carries, but Bush is expected to be the main rusher for the Raiders on Sunday.

On the wide receiver front, Ford will be replaced by rookie Denarius Moore, who turned some heads last week and is looking to put up some more impressive numbers. Considering that Vikings CB Antoine Winfield is out for the year, the Minnesota secondary is looking a bit thin, and Moore will be looking to take advantage.

To keep up to date with all Raiders news and information, please visit Silver and Black Pride.

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Raiders Vs Vikings Injury Report: Darren McFadden, Jacoby Ford Will Not Play

The Raiders look to keep rolling this weekend coming off a convincing victory against the Chargers last week, but will have to do so without a few key offensive players. Running Back Darren McFadden and receiver Jacoby Ford have both been ruled out for Sunday's game against the Vikings.

Additionally, Sebastian Janikowski is still battling a hamstring issue and is right now listed as probable. He kicked a 23-yard field goal last week but the Raiders opted for a fake punt over a 51-yard attempt so it's clear he's still limited. If he can play fully this weekend it would be a very good sign for the league's biggest leg.

Here's the rest of the injury reports for both teams:

Oakland Raiders:

OUT - QB Jason Campbell (collarbone), WR Jacoby Ford (foot), CB Chris Johnson (groin, hamstring), RB Darren McFadden (foot)
    
QUESTIONABLE - S Michael Huff (ankle), S Michael Mitchell (ankle), DT Richard Seymour (knee), RB Manase Tonga (knee), CB DeMarcus Van Dyke (hamstring)
     
PROBABLE - TE Kevin Boss (knee), S Matt Giordano (quadricep), K Sebastian Janikowski (left hamstring), C Samson Satele (knee)

Minnesota Vikings:
 
OUT - S Husain Abdullah (concussion), CB Chris Cook (not injury related), G Anthony Herrera (knee)
    
QUESTIONABLE - LB Erin Henderson (hamstring), TE Visanthe Shiancoe (hamstring)
    
PROBABLE - WR Michael Jenkins (knee), LS Cullen Loeffler (shoulder), QB Christian Ponder (left hand), PR Marcus Sherels (not injury related)

For more in depth discussion and analysis of the Oakland Raiders, make sure to check out Silver and Black Pride.

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Raiders vs. Vikings Key Matchup: Oakland WRs Against Minnesota Secondary

This week, Carson Palmer and the Oakland Raiders face the Vikings in Minnesota. The Vikings are a team that has been abysmal against the pass this year and will be without starting safety Husain Abdullah, as well as their top two cornerbacks in Antoine Winfield and Chris Cook. That leaves a skeleton crew of has-beens and never-weres to attempt to slow down the Raider passing game. Earlier in the week I previewed the battle between Jared Allen and Jared Veldheer, but the battle between the Vikings secondary and the Raider receivers is just as important and the two are significantly linked. If the Vikings defensive line can get pressure, Palmer will not be able to find open receivers. If the receivers are covered, the Vikings will have more time to get to Palmer.

However, it's hard to imagine that happening on a consistent basis. The Vikings are really banged up right now and can't stop the pass even when they are healthy. There's no reason to believe they can stop Denarius Moore or Carson Palmer when San Diego, who has a vastly better set of defensive backs, could not do that whatsoever. The Vikings are very good against the run, but those numbers may be affected by the fact that they are so awful against the pass that teams don't feel the need to run very often. The Raiders should have no trouble establishing a balanced offensive scheme, even if the rush game is bottled up by the likes of Allen and Kevin Williams.

Jacoby Ford may miss the game, but Darrius Heyward-Bey and Denarius Moore will play and it's difficult to see them not having great success against the Vikings. Last week Aaron Rodgers threw four touchdown passes and gave a clear blueprint for exactly how to dismantle the Vikings defense. Carson Palmer has the ability to achieve similar results in this week's game.

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Raiders vs. Vikings, Injury Report: Darren McFadden, Jacoby Ford Miss Friday Practice

As the Oakland Raiders get ready to head to the great Midwest to take on the Minnesota Vikings, two of their most productive offensive players were once again sidelined in practice Friday as Darren McFadden and Jacoby Ford both sat out, and likely will do the same on Sunday as well. 

Per Raiders insider John Dickinson on Twitter

No Darren McFadden & Jacoby Ford at #Raiders final practice before heading to MInnesota @957thegame
Nov 18 via Twitter for BlackBerry®FavoriteRetweetReply

 

It was going to take a miracle to get McFadden ready to play this week, who will now miss his third straight game with his sprained foot he suffered against Kansas City. So that was no surprise. As for Ford, many felt that he could possibly lace them up this Sunday after spraining his foot against the San Diego Chargers, claiming that it wasn't as serious as McFadden's injury. But missing the Friday walkthrough is usually a very strong indicator where you will be on Sunday, and that likely destination is the sideline. 

Hopefully these guys can get healthy and be a factor down the stretch for the first place Raiders, who will need them both if they want to stay on track for a playoff berth. 

For more in depth discussion and analysis of the Oakland Raiders, make sure to check out Silver and Black Pride, THE place to be for anything Raider on the internet. 

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Sebastian Janikowski Injury Update: Oakland Raiders Wash, Rinse, Repeat

The Oakland Raiders have entered into a fairly predictable cycle with their big-legged kicker Sebastian Janikowski. Since suffering a strained hamstring prior to the Raiders week seven contest against the Kansas CIty Chiefs, Seabass has battled through the injury to save the team a roster spot the last two weeks. The team signed Dave Rayner for the Chiefs game, but has gone with Janikowski each of the last two weeks.

Janikowski will likely do some work Friday and/or Saturday to see how his leg is feeling. At that point the Raiders will once again decide whether they need to call in a free agent kicker. Rayner signed with the Buffalo Bills after Rian Lindell was hurt, but there are plenty of kickers on the market.

More than likely the Raiders will stick with Janikowski on Sunday against the Vikings. If it is anything like recent weeks, Janikowski will not get a ton of work on 50+ yard field goals. Even with his hamstring limitation he remains as strong as most kickers in the league. However, the team does not want him pushing it too hard. It will be interesting to see how long it takes for Janikowski to get back to 100% using this process.

For more on the Raiders, check out Silver & Black Pride.

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Broncos Vs. Jets Recap: Tim Tebow Keeps Broncos On Pace With Raiders

The Oakland Raiders entered Thursday leading the AFC West by one game, with the remaining three teams tied for second at 4-5. The Denver Broncos had the first opportunity to put some pressure on the Raiders as they faced the New York Jets on Thursday Night Football. Behind a dominant pass defense and the continued fourth quarter magic of Tim Tebow, the Broncos sprung the 17-13 upset of the Jets.

The Broncos now trail the Raiders by a half game as the Raiders prepare to face the Minnesota Vikings. The Raiders and Broncos split the season series, which means a tie would result in moving further down the NFL's tiebreaker procedures. The next tiebreaker is divisional record and amazingly enough, all four teams in the AFC West are tied at 2-2. The next tiebreaker is winning percentage against common opponents, followed by winning percentage against conference opponents.

There is still a long way to go before we get to tiebreakers in the AFC West. Of course, given how the division has performed thus far, it would not be surprising to see at least two teams tied at season's end. The Broncos have a huge divisional road game next week when they head to San Diego to face the Chargers. The Broncos final divisional game is a season finale home game against the Kansas City Chiefs.

This weekend, The Raiders travel to face the Vikings, the Chargers travel to face the Bears and the Chiefs travel to face the Patriots.

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Raiders Vs. Vikings Injury Report: Darren McFadden, Jacoby Ford Sit Out Thursday Practice

The Oakland Raiders and Minnesota Vikings released their week 11 practice participation reports for Thursday and we saw very little change from the Raiders side. The most significant difference was CB Chimdi Chekwa, who was removed from the daily report and placed on injured reserve. The Raiders are getting further and further decimated by injuries and will look to overcome this one as well.

Darren McFadden and Jacoby Ford both sat out practice again and the odds seem long for them to play this week. Both have sat out both Wednesday and Thursday practices with foot sprains. Although Ford said his foot sprain was not of the same severity as McFadden's, it is still enough to likely keep him out for at least one week.

Kicker Sebastian Janikowski continues to sit out practices as he deals with his hamstring injury. He is likely going to kick, but once again might not be available for kicks of 50+ yards. He will probably test the leg Saturday, at which point the Raiders will decide if he is good to go for Sunday.

DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN PRACTICE: QB Jason Campbell (collarbone), WR Jacoby Ford (foot), K Sebastian Janikowski (left hamstring), CB Chris Johnson (groin, hamstring), RB Darren McFadden (foot), DT Richard Seymour (knee), RB Manase Tonga (knee)

LIMITED PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE: S Matt Giordano (quadricep), S Michael Huff (ankle), S Michael Mitchell (ankle), C Samson Satele (knee), CB DeMarcus Van Dyke (hamstring)

FULL PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE: TE Kevin Boss (knee)

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Raiders-Vikings Preview: Crucial Matchup at Left Tackle Between Jared Allen and Jared Veldheer

It's no secret that Jared Allen has long been one of the best defensive ends in football. He is on pace to break Michael Strahan's single-season sack record. He has fourteen sacks on the year and got one on Aaron Rodgers on Monday night. He is a shoe-in for the Pro Bowl this year and is a challenge for even the best offensive tackle.

This week the Raiders' left tackle, Jared Veldheer, will have the unenviable task of trying to stop him. Veldheer, the second-year pro out of Hillsdale, has quickly become the Raiders' best all around offensive lineman. Veldheer is a giant at 6-8, 315, but Allen is only slightly smaller at 6-6, 270. Veldheer has only given up two sacks all year, but has not faced a defensive end as good as Jared Allen.

This matchup will be extremely important because the only way the awful Vikings defense is going to slow down the Raiders at all is with pressure. Jared Allen is the Vikings' best pass rusher and if he can't get pressure, Carson Palmer will have all day to throw to his speedy receivers who are facing a very suspect secondary. If Jared Veldheer has a good showing in this game, it may help establish him as one of the premier left tackles in the entire league.

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Oakland Raiders Injury Report: Darren McFadden Improving, Jacoby Ford Still Out

It's been over three weeks since the Oakland Raiders had running back Darren McFadden suit up for a game or even practice with his sprained foot, though head coach Hue Jackson said on Wednesday that Run DMC made some 'huge progress' over the course of the week. 

McFadden is all but scratched against the Vikings this Sunday, though Coach Jackson may have opened up some hope for his return this week. DMC watched practice on Wednesday without a boot, and if he can't get ready by Sunday, Jackson hopes he'll be back for the Nov. 27 home game against the Bears.

Wide receiver Jacoby Ford was still out with his sprained foot injury on Wednesday, and is also out against Minnesota. Defensive tackle Richard Seymour has missed the last two practices with a sore ankle, but Jackson said he'll be fine, just giving his veteran a little extra R&R, as he did as well with safety Michael Huff, who didn't play Thursday against the Chargers. Huff has been laying hurt for over a month, but is ready to go against the Vikes. 

Rookie cornerback DeMarcus Van Dyke returned to practice Wednesday from a hamstring injury, but is not assured of getting his starting job back from Lito Shepard according to Coach Jackson. 

For more on the Raiders, head over to Silver and Black Pride

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2011 NFL Week 11 AFC West Preview: Tough Tests For Broncos, Chargers, Chiefs Give Raiders Chance To Extend Divisional Lead

In week 11, the Oakland Raiders play the 2-7 Minnesota Vikings, a team that was just shellacked by the Packers on Monday night, a team reeling from injuries and which is starting a rookie quarterback. The other three teams in the division play teams with a combined record of 17-10. On its surface, this seems to be a golden opportunity for the Raiders to move another game ahead of their divisional rivals. Here's a preview of each individual game.

Jets @ Broncos: This will be an interesting matchup on Thursday night. The Jets come into the game having been tossed around like rag dolls against the Patriots, committing a ton of turnovers and generally looking awful. The Broncos, on the other hand, rode a triple-option offense to a complete destruction of Kansas City on the road. The Broncos are 3-1 with Tim Tebow as the starter and seem to be tailoring the offense to his strengths, which means they run a lot. It's difficult to tell how well this will work against the Jets, who allegedly have a good rush defense but actually rank 15th against the run allowing 116 rush yards per game. I don't think Tim Tebow throws more than 15 passes in this game, but I also don't think the Broncos will be able to shred the Jets' defense like they did the Chiefs'. Jets win by three points.

Raiders @ Vikings: The Vikings were so awful earlier in the year they benched Donovan McNabb midway through their sixth game in favor of rookie QB Christian Ponder. He hasn't been much better, defeating only Carolina and dropping two games to Green Bay. The Vikings have not won a game in their division and their offense consists mostly of Adrian Peterson trying futilely to weave his way through eight-man fronts. The Vikings also lost Antoine Winfield to season-ending injury, although the team has been better without him in the lineup so that may not necessarily be a major loss.

The Raiders, on the other hand, are riding high after a dominant victory over the Chargers last Thursday. Carson Palmer was spectacular and Denarius Moore has turned into a serious weapon. Michael Bush has proved to be a more than adequate replacement for Darren McFadden and the offensive line is playing well. The line play is key, because the strength of Minnesota's team is their defensive line. If the Raiders can keep Jared Allen away from Carson Palmer, the Raiders should have no trouble moving the ball with ease. However, the Raiders are not great at stopping the run, and that's bad news against the league's best running back. However, the total lack of a passing threat from Minnesota allows Oakland to stack the box, and Peterson's success might come through the air as Arian Foster's did earlier in the year.

I expect the Vikings to try to pass early and often to develop a balanced offense, but I don't think they will be able to and I feel most of Minnesota's drives will stall just like Cleveland's did when they played the Raiders. Oakland will win by twelve points.

Chargers @ Bears: The Bears are currently enjoying a four-game win streak and just demolished the Lions 37-13. They intercepted Matt Stafford four times. None of this bodes well for Philip Rivers, whose offensive line was just manhandled by Oakland and is extremely thin due to rampant injuries. Chicago has an injury to Chris Williams on their offense line, but otherwise are reasonably healthy. Julius Peppers will try to do his best Kam Wimbley impression and harass Rivers all day. I strongly suspect it will work. San Diego is on a four-game skid and I don't expect that to change this week in Chicago. Bears by nine.

Kansas City @ New England: With Matt Cassel out due to a significant hand injury, the Chiefs are left starting Tyler Palko at quarterback. That is a very bad sign against a Bill Belichick defense, even one that is the worst in the league against the pass. The Patriots are still good at rushing the passer, and I expect them to get to Palko early and often. The Chiefs don't really have anything going for them at the moment except a decent pass rush, but Tom Brady gets rid of the ball so quickly that advantage will be quickly mitigated. New England will destroy Kansas City, who will be lucky to win another game this year. Patriots by twenty-six.

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Raiders vs. Vikings: Oakland Looks to Continue Being Road Warriors Against the Vikings

Last season, the Raiders swept the division, but had trouble winning against teams outside of it and especially doing it on the road. The Raiders were 5-3 on the road last season with the three wins coming against division rivals. The Raiders were unable to walk away with a single road win against a non AFC West opponent all season last year.

This year, the Raiders have been road warriors. Through the first nine games of the season, the Raiders have a 3-1 road record, with the only loss coming in week two when the Raiders were forced to travel across country on a short week to face the resurgent Buffalo Bills. Even in that game, the Raiders played well and should have won.

Meanwhile, the Raiders are 2-3 while playing at the Oakland Coliseum, with two of those losses coming against inferior teams in the Kansas City Chiefs and the Denver Broncos. This begs the question, why are the Raiders playing so well on the road, but struggle while at home?

Finding the answer to that question may be as simple as looking at the fact that the Raiders are one of the youngest teams in the NFL. Many of the Raiders key contributors are rather inexperienced in the league. The Raiders have a second year player and a rookie starting on their offensive line in Jared Veldheer and Stefen Wisniewski, a second year player and a rookie who are key options at wide receiver in Jacoby Ford and Denarius Moore, two second year players starting in the defensive front seven in Lamarr Houston and Rolando McClain and a rookie who gets a large amount of playing time in the secondary in DeMarcus Van Dyke (that could turn into two players once Chimdi Chekwa gets his hamstring healthy).

With this much youth on your team, road games provide an opportunity for the team to spend an imense amount of time together. Traveling together, staying in the same place and eating meals together goes a long way towards helping this young team bond and build chemistry. It also may have helped keep the team focused. Getting away from the distractions that could arise while playing at home in Oakland and being able to focus on nothing but your team mates and the game at hand has likely helped this team galvanize on road trips and come away with solid performances and a very good road record.

This Sunday, the Raiders will look to continue their winning ways on the road as they take on a Vikings team that is not very good. As long as the Raiders do not look past the Vikings and star running back Adrian Peterson, they should improve their road record to an impressive 4-1 on the season.

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Raiders Vs. Vikings Injury Report: Darren McFadden And Jacoby Ford Still Not Practicing

The Oakland Raiders have serious injury issues that are keeping them from becoming whole as a unit. Chief among them is the status of Darren McFadden and Jacoby Ford, which still remains pretty much in limbo. Without them in the Raiders lineup, it's hard to get a read on how good Oakland can be on the road against Minnesota.

McFadden seems to be making progress to returning to action on the field, but at the very best it's looking like a 40-60 proposition that he plays on Sunday. Ford also seems to be a bit off from returning to action himself, so it's looking like you might have to wait awhile before you can count on either player. Fantasy football owners are best served looking elsewhere for capable replacement options, whereever you can find them.

Here's a list of the remaining Raiders injuries.

DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN PRACTICE: QB Jason Campbell (collarbone), WR Jacoby Ford (foot), K Sebastian Janikowski (left hamstring), CB Chris Johnson (groin, hamstring), RB Darren McFadden (foot), DT Richard Seymour (knee), RB Manase Tonga (knee)

LIMITED PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE: CB Chimdi Chekwa (hamstring), S Matt Giordano (quadricep), S Michael Huff (ankle), S Michael Mitchell (ankle), C Samson Satele (knee), CB DeMarcus Van Dyke (hamstring)

To discuss the Raiders, head on over to Silver and Black Pride. To discuss the Vikings, check out Daily Norseman.

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Raiders vs. Vikings, Injury Report: Darren McFadden, Jacoby Ford Sit Out Wednesday Practice

With a semi-firm grip on first place in the AFC West, the Oakland Raiders are going to need all hands on deck to maintain their status atop the heap. Unfortunately for them, Darren McFadden and Jacoby Ford missed practice once again on Wednesday, increasing the probability that neither will be suiting up for the Silver and Black this weekend. 

According to Raiders insider Steve Corkran on Twitter, both speedy Raiders did not participate in Wednesday practice. Run DMC's status is the most troubling here as he hasn't practiced since way back on Oct. 23, and if he doesn't start practicing by Thursday, there basically isn't a chance that he'll be playing this Sunday, marking the third straight game that he has missed completely. 

As for Ford, he still believes his injury isn't as bad as McFadden's, and will have to wait until Thursday as well as to see if he can play this weekend or not. 

For more on the Raiders, head over to Silver and Black Pride

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Matt Cassel Injury: Impact On Oakland Raiders

The Oakland Raiders have climbed into first place in the AFC West and as they looked further secure their division lead, they may have received a bit of a luck break. The Kansas City Chiefs have lost quarterback Matt Cassel for an indefinite period of time due to a hand injury. Cassel is likely going to require surgery and could cost him the rest of the season.

While the Chiefs await final word on Cassel, they will be rolling with Tyler Palko as their starting quarterback moving forward. Rookie Ricky Stanzi is always an option, but the Chiefs are taking their time with him at this point. Palko was 5 of 6 for 47 yards when he came in after Cassel hurt his hand.

It is possible Tyler Palko could turn into the second coming of Kurt Warner and lead the Chiefs to playoff glory. The more likely scenario has the Chiefs continuing their current slide out of the playoff picture. This is big for the Raiders because the Chiefs beat them in Oakland. The Raiders split with Denver and have already taken their road game against the San Diego Chargers. If the one team with a chance to sweep the season series loses their starting QB, all the better for the Raiders playoff chances.

For more on the Raiders, head over to Silver & Black Pride.

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Week 11 NFL Picks: Oakland Raiders Look To Solidify AFC West Lead

The Oakland Raiders travel to Minnesota this weekend to face the Vikings in an inter-conference matchup that is huge for their playoff chances. Given how tight the AFC West has become, every game has huge implications on the divisional race. The Raiders are slight underdogs due to their numerous injuries, but if Carson Palmer and Michael Bush can step up like they did last week, the Raiders should be able to win their game.

The Raiders are in a position where they just need to keep winning games, but that won't stop the rest of us from doing a little scoreboard watching. If Oakland keeps winning they will be fine, but if they can get a cushion in their divisional lead, all the better. Here is a look at some of the pertinent week eleven games that impact the Raiders.

New York Jets @ Denver Broncos: The Broncos have won two straight and somehow have figured something out with Tim Tebow and the option offense. I don't know what it is, but I also know, do not question the Tebow. PICK: Broncos

San Diego Chargers @ Chicago Bears: The Chargers went into last Thursday's game as heavy favorites, and came out of it suffering a defeat in which the Raiders had their way with them. Now the Chargers have to travel to Soldier Field against a red-hot Bears team. Norv Turner's teams get late in the season but I don't think we're quite there yet. PICK: Bears

Kansas City Chiefs @ New England Patriots: The Chiefs have lost two straight, but more importantly, they may have lost Matt Cassel for the season with a hand injury. I suppose Tyler Palko could shock the world on Monday Night Football, but how many people actually think that will happen? PICK: Patriots

The Raiders best shot at making the playoffs is winning the AFC West. However, their current 5-4 record knots them up with three other teams in the running for the second wildcard berth. Here are some quick picks for those matchups:

Tennessee Titans @ Atlanta Falcons - PICK: Falcons
Buffalo Bills @ Miami Dolphins - PICK: Bills
Cincinnati Bengals @ Baltimore Ravens - PICK: Ravens

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Raiders Vs. Vikings Announcers: Kevin Harlan, Solomon Wilcots For CBS

The Oakland Raiders and Minnesota Vikings face off in a curious-looking matchup that'll be distributed throughout the West Coast and most of the country West of the Mississippi River plus most of the upper Midwest. So a middle-tier CBS announcing team showing up for their game makes sense, as neither team is assured of making the playoffs at this point. Never to fear though, as Kevin Harlan is one of the best play-by-play men in the game, and should have a grand time calling what figures to be a strange one in the Metrodome.

As the AFC West leaders, the Raiders will have a target on their back. Their success is crucial to everyone watching in Denver, Kansas City and the San Diego markets, as all three teams are only a game behind the Raiders in the AFC West standings.

For more from the Raiders, hit up Silver and Black Pride. To talk about the Vikings, check out Daily Norseman.

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Darren McFadden Injury Update: Hue Jackson Not Prepared To Declare Him Out

The Oakland Raiders have returned to practice this week after some time off following their Thursday Night Football victory over the San Diego Chargers. Running back Darren McFadden was finally out of his walking boot on Monday, but it remains to be seen whether he will be available this Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings. Head coach Hue Jackson would not rule out McFadden at this point, but rather wants to wait to see how he handles practice this week.

The Raiders will issue their first official practice participation report on Wednesday, at which point we'll have a better idea of McFadden's status. More than likely, given Michael Bush's strong performances to date, McFadden will sit one more week. He is an integral part of the team, but if they can buy one more week to get him back to 100% it is probably worth it. Rather than have him aggravate the injury by coming back to early, waiting an extra week is likely the better course of action.

The good news is that Michael Bush is arguably the best backup running back in the NFL. He has always been a solid replacement when McFadden has gotten hurt. It is not the optimal situation, but a lot of teams would kill for it.

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Raiders Vs. Vikings: Denarius Moore Looks To Continue Hot Streak Against Minnesota

The Oakland Raiders won a crucial division match-up against the San Diego Chargers last week to move into first place in the AFC West. Behind big performances by running back Michael Bush and wide receiver Denarius Moore, the Raiders overcame the absence of Darren McFadden and managed to muster up 24 points on the way to a seven-point victory.

Over half of Oakland's offensive production can be tied back to rookie Moore, who stepped up after Jacoby Ford left the game in the first quarter and proceed to record a monster game. In in only his ninth NFL game, Moore caught five passes for 123 receiving yards and two touchdowns.

Moore has been hot-and-cold this season, showing fans and spectators alike that he is capable of posting big numbers (receiving games of 123 and 146yards) while frustrating them with poor performances (receiving games of 4, 9 and 19 yards). Part of Moore's inconsistency thus far might stem from the unpredictable playing time of the Raiders receivers this year.

That, though, should not be a problem in the coming weeks. Darrius-Heyward Bay has not caught a ball in the last two games and Ford continues to deal with an injury. Given these circumstances, Moore has an incredible opportunity to solidify himself as Oakland's top receiver against the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday. An impressive follow-up performance to last week's huge game would mark a step in the right direction for Moore. 

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Oakland Raiders Injury Report: Darren McFadden, Jacoby Ford Not Practicing

If you have to wonder why the Oakland Raiders are underdogs to the Minnesota Vikings, the absence of two of their top playmakers might have something to do with that.

Darren McFadden does seem to be back on the road to recovery as he's shed his walking boot according to Vittorio Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle. McFadden still isn't practicing, which could mean that Michael Bush better be prepared to start for the third consecutive week (and rookie Taiwan Jones to see plenty of snaps) while he recovers fully from his foot injury. Additionally, Steve Corkran of Bay Area News Group tweets that Jacoby Ford didn't practice either, which could preclude him from participating this Sunday.

The Oakland offense thus could be limited in what they can use against a stout Vikings front seven that will be keying in on making the quarterback throw. This would put more pressure on Carson Palmer to connect with young Denarius Moore and Darrius Heyward-Bey,. Many of these players were impressive against the San Diego Chargers While Minnesota has yet to really start stringing victories together, they competed strongly with the Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers and beat the Carolina Panthers a week later.

To talk about the Raiders and their injuries, best to head to Silver and Black Pride.

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Raiders Vs. Vikings Odds: Oakland Slight Underdogs In Minnesota

The Oakland Raiders seemed to shake off the rust after beating the San Diego Chargers on Thursday night, and look like they should control their own fate if they want to win the AFC West. They have a game over the Chargers, Broncos and Chiefs, and they should have some good hope this week when they take on a rebuilding Minnesota Vikings team playing on short rest. A Thursday night team playing a Monday night team seems a bit unfair from the NFL scheduling honchos. 

The Raiders are surprisingly not favored in this contest though. Despite the fact they're playing in pretty ideal conditions in a dome and don't have to worry about the elements, Oakland is either in a pick'em, a one point underdog or a three point underdogs depending on which book you look at. Apparently no one is quite sold on Carson Palmer quite yet on winning consistently in this one. And of course the status of Darren McFadden still remains heavily in doubt. There are lots of variables you have to factor in before you can really think about picking Oakland.

To discuss the Raiders, go to Silver and Black Pride. To discuss the Vikings, go to Daily Norseman.

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Raiders Vs. Vikings NFL Preview: Less Christian Ponder And More Adrian Peterson For Oakland's Focus

The Oakland Raiders are 5-4 and sitting atop the AFC West division after beating the Chargers on Thursday night. They're now heading to the Metrodome to take on the Minnesota Vikings. For more on the game and the team in general, go to Silver And Black Pride, SB Nation's Oakland Raiders blog.

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