The Oakland Raiders travel to face the San Diego Chargers in the first Thursday Night Football game of the 2011 NFL season. The Raiders and Chargers are tied with the Kansas City Chiefs at 4-4 atop the AFC West. The Raiders are a touchdown underdog and will likely be playing without Darren McFadden in a game that could prove crucial to their playoff hopes.
The return of Thursday Night Football means the return of Brad Nessler and Mike Mayock to the NFL broadcast booth. Nessler has focused his career on college football, but he has done a variety of NFL games for ESPN and ABC over the years. Nessler replaces Bob Papa in the broadcast booth. Mayock primarily handles NFL Network draft coverage, but his knowledge of football is extensive enough that he provides excellent color commentary.
This game marks the Raiders' second appearance in a prime time game. They have no more games scheduled for prime time, but depending on how the AFC West plays out their Week 16 contest against the Kansas City Chiefs could get moved to Sunday Night Football. That is not an option in Week 17 as their is no Sunday Night Football or Monday Night Football.