The Las Vegas Raiders head to Cincinnati on a four-game winning streak, so here are three bold predictions for the Wild Card round.
Raider Nation, the Silver and Black are back in the playoffs. Let that sink in. There’s no doubt that much of the fanbase is probably still celebrating Sunday’s victory. That is totally fine, but the team doesn’t have that luxury with Saturday quickly approaching on a short-week turnaround. The Raiders’ opponent is arguably the best AFC team outside of the Kansas City Chiefs, the Cincinnati Bengals.
It’s been a rough road to the playoffs, but the Raiders can look back on the 2021 season and truly smile. No, they shouldn’t be satisfied with simply making a postseason appearance, not at all. That would be a disservice to what this squad is capable of. Nonetheless, considering what transpired in the course of the campaign, simply getting to the dance was an odyssey. There’s no need to rehash all of the negative events, but suffice to say that this team is capable of shocking the NFL landscape now that the playoffs are here.
This Raiders team, led by Rich Bisaccia and quarterback Derek Carr, arrives in Cincinnati as a different team than the one that faced the Bengals during the regular season. In that game, Las Vegas mostly held its own. The defense slowed down the Bengals’ run game until they were finally gassed, leading to Joe Mixon’s gashing of them late in the game. Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow had a relatively pedestrian game, throwing for just one touchdown and only 148 passing yards. So, with that being said, will this contest be any different?