Oakland Raiders 2017 Schedule Preview and Early Prediction

Sep 11, 2016; New Orleans, LA, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) celebrates after completing a two point conversion to take the lead during the fourth quarter of a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Raiders defeated the Saints 35-34. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 11, 2016; New Orleans, LA, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) celebrates after completing a two point conversion to take the lead during the fourth quarter of a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Raiders defeated the Saints 35-34. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports /

An early prediction for the 2017 Oakland Raiders season, including a week by week breakdown of their schedule.

The NFL schedule has finally been released! Although we all knew who the Oakland Raiders were going to play going into 2017, we were finally able to get dates and times.

According to the NFL’s official Twitter account, based off the winning percentages of the 2016 opponents, the Raiders have the fourth toughest schedule out of any team for the 2017 season.

The Raiders will also be playing in Mexico for the second consecutive year against the defending Super Bowl champions. In spite of all of that, fans will expect a postseason birth, as well as have Super Bowl aspirations.

These are lofty expectations to say the least, but if the Raiders want to take that next step, they must embrace all challenges thrown their way. Let’s take a deeper look into the schedule and give some early predictions, because we as fans love nothing more than predicting games in April.

Week 1 at Tennessee Titans

The Raiders will be opening the season on the road for the second consecutive year, and will be playing a familiar opponent in the Tennessee Titans.

Oakland has gone into Tennessee and won the previous two matchups by slim margins. This game has the potential to be one of the better contests in all of Week 1, if you consider it features two of the better young quarterbacks in the NFL in Derek Carr and Marcus Mariota.

Both quarterbacks will be coming off nasty leg injuries, and I’m sure both players will be looking to prove something in the 2017 season. Since the Raiders have played in Tennessee the last two years, I will say that the third time will be a charm for the Titans, and the Raiders will start the season with a loss.

Score: Titans win 30-28

Record: 0-1

Week 2 vs. New York Jets

Kicking off their home opener, the Raiders will be playing the New York Jets. If anyone remembers, the Raiders lost their home opener to the Atlanta Falcons last season. Although this Jets squad is nowhere near what the Falcons were, the Raiders should not take them lightly.

This game has the potential to be very emotional, or extremely awkward considering it will be the first regular season game in Oakland since relocation was approved for the Raiders to move to Las Vegas. Regardless of all of that, I do not see any kind of scenario where the Raiders lose this one.

Score: Raiders win 28-16

Record: 1-1

Week 3 at Washington Redskins

The Raiders will be back on the road for this one, and will be playing their first primetime game of the season on Sunday night against the Washington Redskins.

This game has the potential to be a high-scoring affair, when you consider both the Raiders and the Redskins had two of the most explosive offenses in all of football.

In this case, the Raiders have pretty much kept all of their offensive weapons, while the Redskins have lost some key weapons in Pierre Garcon and Desean Jackson. My gut tells me that the Raiders pull this one out.

Score: Raiders win 34-24

Record: 2-1

 Week 4 at Denver Broncos

In Week 4, the Raiders will be playing their first division game against the Denver Broncos in Denver.

I’m sure Derek Carr of all people will be pumped to play in this one, considering he broke his leg right before the Raiders were scheduled to close out the regular season against the Broncos. The Raiders lost that game, and in result, it bumped them into the wild card, and they would go home in the first round.

This one’s for Derek. (John Elway pun)

Score: Raiders win 28-21

Record: 3-1

Week 5 vs. Baltimore Ravens

The Raiders will now be on a three game home-stand, and will start that with another familiar opponent in the Baltimore Ravens. This will be the third straight year the Raiders will be facing the Ravens.

I do not expect much here. The Ravens are an older team, that seems to be on the downside. They have Joe Flacco, while the Raiders have Derek Carr. Anything more to discuss?

Score: Raiders win 31-20

Record: 4-1

Week 6 vs. Los Angeles Chargers

On the second game of their home-stand, it features another division rival in the Los Angeles Chargers.

The Chargers are another team that have hired a rookie head coach, and they look to be a team that should not pose much of a threat to anyone inside the division. The only real variable that has stayed the same with the Chargers has been Phillip Rivers. Factor that in with the rivalry, and this could be an interesting game.

I don’t see the Chargers coming into Oakland and escaping with a win. The Raiders will make it five straight wins against the Chargers.

Score: Raiders win 37-27

Record: 5-1

 Week 7 vs. Kansas City Chiefs

Closing out their home-stand, it will be against the much hated Kansas City Chiefs. This is a team that has been escaping the Raiders the past two years.

This will be the one. The Raiders will win this one for Oakland, on Thursday night, in primetime, and in the RAIN. Yeah, I said it.

This game will feature shades of 2014 when Derek Carr beat the Chiefs for his first career win. Maybe you’ll even see Khalil Mack dancing behind the line of scrimmage and drawing a near penalty.

Score: Raiders win 24-20

Record: 6-1

 Week 8 at Buffalo Bills

The Raiders will be back on the road and this time they will be traveling east to Buffalo to take on the Bills. This is another 10am PST game, so I would expect the Raiders to come out a bit sluggish even though they got the extra rest after playing on Thursday night.

Despite the extra rest, I feel that seven straight wins will elude the Raiders for the second straight year. This has the potential to be a real trap game if you ask me.

Score: Raiders lose 27-23

Record: 6-2

Week 9 at Miami Dolphins

For the second consecutive week, the Raiders will be on the east coast, and this time heading down south to take on the Dolphins.

Hopefully Jack Del Rio will use the same strategy, and stay east, instead of taking two long flights from Oakland in consecutive weeks. Although the Dolphins were one of the playoff teams from last year, I cannot pick Ryan Tannehill over Derek Carr in this scenario. Raiders start their bye week and go home with a win.

Score: Raiders win 30-24

Record: 7-2

Week 11 vs. New England Patriots

In back to back years, the Raiders will be playing in Mexico, but this time it will be against the defending champion New England Patriots.

This will probably be the biggest test of the season for the Raiders, and quite possibly a look at what the AFC championship game could be. The big difference here is that the Raiders will be coming off of a bye week, while the Patriots will be coming off of a Sunday night game against the Broncos, in Denver.

In my opinion, traveling I feel will be a much bigger issue for the Patriots than it will for the Raiders. The Raiders escape Mexico with a W.

Score: Raiders win 30-27

Record: 8-2

Week 12 vs. Denver Broncos

The Raiders will close out their annual series against the Broncos in Week 12, and I fully expect a competitive game here.

But, Paxton Lynch/Trevor Siemian against Derek Carr? I will take my chances with Carr. The Raiders are the better team, and have competent quarterback play to back it up. I expect another win in this one.

Score: Raiders win 24-16

Record: 9-2

Week 13 vs. New York Giants

Playing their second game against the NFC East division, it will be against the New York Giants, in what could be another good game.

The Giants were another team that was a playoff team in 2016, and seem to not going anywhere anytime soon. You could argue that they are just as balanced as the Raiders, and it is not inconceivable that the Raiders drop this one. My gut tells me that the Raiders fall short in this one.

Score: Raiders lose 26-24

Record: 9-3

Week 14 at Kansas City Chiefs

At this point in the season, the Raiders would be undefeated within the division. That comes to an end in Kansas City.

Considering the Raiders recent track record against the Chiefs, I just do not see any scenario in which the Raiders go into Kansas City and beat the Chiefs. The Raiders will lose back to back games for the first time for the 2017 season.

Score: Raiders lose 23-17

Record: 9-4

Week 15 vs. Dallas Cowboys

The Dallas Cowboys versus the Oakland Raiders. This could be a Super Bowl 52 preview if everything goes right for both teams. Knowing the NFL, nothing ever goes how you think its supposed to.

Regardless, this should be another great game, and its even better that its scheduled to be on Sunday night in Oakland.

There will be a ton of young talent on display, and I would expect big numbers in terms of viewership when you factor in how big both fanbases are for both teams. I am expecting a high scoring affair, but the Raiders will come out on top in this one.

Score: Raiders win 38-35

Record: 10-4

Week 16 at Philadelphia Eagles

Closing out their primetime schedule, Raiders fans will have a treat getting to be able to watch their team on Monday night on Christmas night. The bummer here is that it is a road game.

This is another game that could be a trap game for the Raiders. Both teams could be vying for a playoff berth/seeding, so the Eagles could be playing for something at this point in the season.

The tough road schedule I feel takes a toll on the Raiders, and how motivated will they be playing on Christmas night, instead of being with their families? We’ll have to see.

Score: Raiders lose 27-20

Record: 10-5

Week 17 at Los Angeles Chargers

On New Year’s Eve, the Raiders will conclude their regular season against the Chargers. Once again, I feel that the Raiders will go into LA, and beat the Chargers whole-heatedly.

If you want to be honest, is this really an away game for the Raiders? Last time I checked, the Raiders have a huge following in Los Angeles, and I would expect there to be a sea of silver and black when the Raiders play the Chargers.

Score: Raiders win 33-21

Record: 11-5