Raiders at Chiefs 2023 Week 16: Studs and Duds

The Las Vegas Raiders played the role of the Grinch as they ruined Christmas in Kansas City. Here are the Studs and Duds from a huge Week 16 win over the hated Chiefs. 

Dec 25, 2023; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Las Vegas Raiders cornerback Jack Jones (18) returns an
Dec 25, 2023; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Las Vegas Raiders cornerback Jack Jones (18) returns an / Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports
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Raiders HC Antonio Pierce - Stud

In last week's column after the victory against the Chargers, we mentioned that Antonio Pierce had added a massive victory to his resume with the destruction of a division rival. This was especially important because it was coming off the embarrassing loss to the Minnesota Vikings but we also mentioned that a victory against the Chiefs or even a spirited effort would be great for his case.

It’s safe to say that he exceeded our expectations with the team's performance in Kansas City, and he may have just locked up the job long term. When looking at the three-game stretch to end the season, I believed that a 2–1 record would be enough for Pierce to keep the job. Now however, I think that no matter what happens the last two weeks he should be the guy moving forward. 

Mark Davis probably regrets not keeping Rich Bisaccia and I think he will not make the same mistake twice. Antonio Pierce has his guys playing with an edge and an attitude that fits the raider way and has helped put together the best Raiders defense in decades.

Davis will also be aware of the offensive struggles that the team has had but knows that they are playing with a fourth-round rookie at quarterback. There is a clear vision of success for this team where a defense of this caliber operates with a talented quarterback on the other side and Pierce leading the way.  

There are still some big decisions to make like which quarterback to pursue in the draft or free agency and whether to extend Josh Jacobs or not, but one massive question has been answered and who the next head coach should be. Keeping this defensive staff in place with Pierce and Patrick Graham, and adding a talented offensive coordinator and quarterback, should make for a very good 2024 season for the Raiders.