A look at the final stretch for the Oakland Raiders playoff hopes
Just a few weeks ago the Oakland Raiders looked to be in prime position for a playoff berth. Now, they’re on the outside looking in, with hopes of snagging the 6th seed in the AFC. So what do they have to overcome with just four games remaining?
After the Oakland Raiders dropped their last two games against the New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs, their roadmap to getting into the playoffs has been deeply tarnished. They’re now faced with an uphill battle, but mathematically they still remain in contention.
Entering week 12 with a record of 6-4 the layout appeared to be a favorable one, but things haven’t gone accordingly to Jon Gruden’s recent game plans. After getting boat raced in New York with a score of 34-3, the Raiders took flight to Arrowhead stadium with the winner taking possession of first place in the AFC West, but Oakland had no answer for Kansas City.
The division appears to be out of sight, but if the Raiders get some help along the way, and stack some wins in the final four games, Oakland could sneak into the playoffs after all.
There’s four teams roughing it out for the final spot in the AFC playoff picture — the Steelers, Titans, Colts and the Raiders. So what does the remaining schedule look like for these four teams?
vs Cardinals (12/8)
vs Bills (12/15)
at Jets (12/22)
at Ravens (12/29)
at Raiders (12/8)
vs Texans (12/15)
vs Saints (12/22)
at Texans (12/29)
vs Titans (12/8)
vs Jaguars (12/15)
at Chargers (12/22)
at Broncos (12/29)
at Buccaneers (12/8)
at Saints (12/16)
vs Panthers (12/22)
at Jaguars (12/29)
The Raiders week 14 matchup against the Tennessee Titans is instrumental for their playoff hopes. If they pickup a win over the Titans, Oakland will then hold the tiebreaker over Tennessee and Indianapolis — two teams playing for the sixth seed.
With four more weeks on the schedule, Oakland holds the easiest road the rest of the way. By the looks of it, the Raiders need to win out the rest of the way to keep their head above water for the playoff race. However, that’s a daunting task to ask as winning at least three of the next four games (including the Titans) is more attainable and could still get them in with help from other teams across the league.
No matter how you slice it, the fight to get in will be a tough one for the silver and black.
If there was ever a ‘must win game’ for the Raiders this season, it’s this week against the Titans. Tennessee is scorching hot since promoting Ryan Tannehill to quarterback, and have won five of their last six games. In a do or die situation for the Raiders season, Derek Carr must answer the call with Mike Vrabel‘s team coming to town. If not the chances of playoff football will more than likely come to an abrupt end.