It won’t be easy, but there is a path to victory for the Oakland Raiders on Thursday Night Football in Week 7. They will be hosting a familiar foe in the arch rival Kansas City Chiefs. These teams know each other all too well, playing twice annually home and away.
Oakland is the home team in this game, so that helps. However, the Silver and Black are the underdogs in this rivalry series. That’s because the Chiefs have taken care of business in the first six weeks and the Raiders simply have not. Kansas City is 5-1, while Oakland is just 2-4 on the year.
Given that this is a major rivalry game, on a short week and in primetime, anything can happen. Did you think that the Denver Broncos were going to lose to the winless New York Giants at home on Sunday Night Football last week? Exactly, the Raiders definitely have a chance in this one, albeit a slim one.
Simply put, the Raiders have to play their best game of the season up to this point to get a much-needed victory over the Chiefs. The odds are against the Raiders, but there is a will, there is a way. Here are the five keys to a victory over arch rival Kansas City for the Silver and Black.
Make Kansas City earn each score offensively
The Oakland defense will give up points to almost anybody. Joe Flacco‘s ability to stretch the field on the Raiders’ defense in Week 5 is the point exactly. In short, Kansas City will be able to put the ball into the end zone on the Raiders. However, Oakland must control the pace at which the Chiefs do it.
If Oakland can have Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith channel his most inner super efficiencies and methodically take the Kansas City offense down the field on a 14-play drive, well, that’s better than surrendering a 75-yard end-around to Tyreek Hill, isn’t it?
You can dissect that in one of two ways. By being out there for 14 plays in a row, one could say that it is just tiring out the defense. However on the contrary, the defense could be gaining confidence and shuts down the Chiefs later.
Let’s be real. Giving up a 50-yard touchdown to Hill or running back Kareem Hunt would be a huge blow that the struggling Raiders’ offense would have a hard time keeping up with. Let rookie kicker Harrison Butker keep the Chiefs in the game. It’s a better game plan than chasing Hill down the sidelines. Make Kansas City work for all of its points.