The Raiders are coming off a bye.
Even though they are getting more than seven points at a neutral site, the Raiders do have an advantage over the Patriots in this one: Oakland is coming off a bye. This means that the Raiders will be presumably laser focused on beating the Patriots. It has been on their mind for two weeks now.
The Patriots had to play in their own house of horrors last week up in Denver. Tom Brady has struggled more at Mile High than in any other football stadium in the country. While the Patriots are vastly superior over the Broncos, it is a rivalry and a hostile environment that New England could not overlook.
All the while, Oakland could sit back at home, get healthy and think about beating the Patriots in a week. Though a few players are banged up heading into this game, Oakland is about as healthy as it is going to be heading into this gotta have it game.
While Bill Belichick has definitely thought of everything, Jack Del Rio has had an extra week to prepare for this game. With the season on the line, there is no reason that Del Rio and his guys can’t play with the greatest attention to detail in this game. It’s not their forte, but this is New England, so bring your A game.