Oakland Raiders: 3 matchups key to a victory against the Denver Broncos
By Daniel Davis
The Oakland Raiders take on the Denver Broncos in Week 1 on Monday night, and here are three key matchups for a victory against their AFC West rival.
The Denver Broncos have no love lost against the Oakland Raiders as their division rivals in the AFC West. Joe Flacco is the new quarterback in town and the defense isn’t as ferocious as the previous years. The toughest matchups are going to be on the offensive line for the Raiders offense as they take on Von Miller and Derek Wolfe, one of the best pass-rushing tandems in the NFL.
The last matchup between these two teams was on Christmas Eve last year, where the Raiders won 27-14 at home. The Raiders shut out the Broncos in the first half while putting up 17 points in that same time. Although the Broncos are a different team, their defense remains about the same, and Derek Carr had a decent game but didn’t make mistakes.
He didn’t throw any interceptions but no touchdowns either. The running game was the key to winning, with Doug Martin leading the charge with 21 carries for 107 years and a 5.1 average. However impressive this sounds, the offensive line only allowed one sack by Adam Gostis, and Von Miller didn’t record a single tackle or quarterback hit.
The defense played extremely well, intercepting Case Keenum two times in the secondary. Phillip Lindsay was held to 46 yards on 10 carries, pretty good considering the lack of defensive talent on the team last year. Desean Hamilton and Courtland Sutton each had a touchdown, and combined for 105 yards on 12 catches, with 4 four of those and 40 of those yards coming in the final 10 minutes of the game.
Even the special teams got into the action with a touchdown Dwayne Harris on a punt return. Safe to say, the Raiders played a near-perfect game on the last outing.
Here are three key matchups the Raiders need to win in order to start 1-0 in 2019.