Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
The Raiders have a good chance to actually win this week, so long as they don't make any big mistakes.
This year, it seems like any time the Raiders have some momentum and are about to really get things going, they shoot themselves in the foot. They have a turnover differential of -7 and Carson Palmer has thrown 14 interceptions. The team has committed 9 fumbles, and while fumbles never come at an opportune time, the Raiders just seem to do it at the worst possible time and kill any chance they have at prolonged success. We'll look at the first game of the season and the most recent as examples.
In game 1 against San Diego, the Raiders were down early but had a chance to even the game when Carson Palmer completed a long pass to Rod Streater, who fumbled the ball fighting for extra yardage. The Chargers took the ball and never looked back. In the game last week against Denver, the Raiders were again down early but were driving and looked ready to score a touchdown. Instead, Carson Palmer threw a terrible pass into the end zone right to Denver's Champ Bailey. The Broncos never gave up the lead. In both of those games, the Raider defense played hard but were on the field constantly due to the offense's ineptness and the team could never catch up.
The one thing the team has done well is cut down some on the penalties this season, with only 89 so far. However, considering the team won eight games last year while simultaneously committing the most penalties by any professional football team in the history of recorded time, perhaps the penalties are not the team's biggest worry at this point.
Make no mistake, the Chiefs suck. They are terrible, awful, and bad. But the Raiders can lose to them if they do what they have done all year, which is to make all the necessary mistakes with which they can pluck defeat from the jaws of victory. They don't need to worry about positional matchups or exotic blitz packages. They just need to execute and not royally screw things up.