The Las Vegas Raiders need to utilize both quarterbacks to beat the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 18 and clinch a playoff spot.
The Las Vegas Raiders have a daunting task ahead of them in Week 18, as they need to beat the Los Angeles Chargers to punch their ticket to the playoffs. Of course, if a miracle happens earlier in the day, and the Indianapolis Colts lose to the Jacksonville Jaguars, they would get in before this matchup, but most likely, it is going to come down to who wins this divisional rivalry game.
During the 2020 NFL season, the Raiders had to turn to backup quarterback Marcus Mariota against these same Chargers late in the year, as Derek Carr injured his groin during the team’s Week 15 game against Los Angeles, a game that the Raiders would go on to lose by a score of 30-27.
Mariota was outstanding in that game, however, beating the Chargers time and time again with his arm, and his legs. For the game, Mariota finished 17-of-28 passing for 226 yards and a touchdown. He also rushed nine times for 88 yards and a score.
Against the Chargers in Week 18 of this season, the Raiders need to make sure Mariota is a part of their game plan, more than he has been across the entire 2021 campaign.
Raiders need to use Mariota’s legs and arm
The Chargers and Raiders are going to throw everything at one another to come away with the victory on Sunday night, and we have seen the Mariota wrinkle net the Silver and Black some big plays over the last two seasons. On Sunday night, Las Vegas needs to make him a big part of the offense, possibly getting some reps on nearly every possession, especially against what can be a very tough Chargers pass rush.
Las Vegas has a real chance to punch their ticket to the playoffs on Sunday night, but they need to use Mariota’s full skill set to do so. He is a guy who had great success against this team last season when Carr was injured, and a package of plays for him will be crucial in the Raiders winning game No. 10 Sunday night.