Week 14 brings a home game for the Las Vegas Raiders, as they look to end their current two-game losing streak. The Raiders will take on the Minnesota Vikings inside Allegiant Stadium in this matchup, and with both teams coming off the bye week, we could be in for an exciting matchup between two teams fighting for their playoff lives.
Like the Raiders, Minnesota has dropped their last two games, the previous loss coming in an embarrassing effort against the Chicago Bears at home on Monday Night Football in Week 12. The Vikings do get Justin Jefferson back for this matchup, so that should help Joshua Dobbs try and hang on to the starting quarterback spot going forward.
Here, we look at three things to keep an eye on in this Week 14 matchup.
Raiders vs Vikings 2023 Week 14: 3 things to watch
3. The health of Maxx Crosby
During the Raiders last game before the bye week, all eyes were on the health of Maxx Crosby, who was listed as doubtful for that game. Despite being designated as doubtful, Crosby played against the Chiefs, but it was clear that his injured knee was hindering him in the pass rush.
With the extra week off, the hope is that Crosby can be full-throttle the rest of the way, as the Raiders have no chance of clinching a playoff spot without him at 100 percent and in the lineup. Dobbs can hurt teams with his legs, so getting after him early in this one will go a long way in securing the victory for the Silver and Black.
2. Raiders coming out of the bye week
As we stated earlier, both teams are coming off a bye week, so we will see which franchise that gives the advantage to in this one. The Vikings and Raiders are both long-shots to make the playoffs this season, but both are leaving the bye week with hopes that they can get their seasons back on track.
This will be a huge test for interim head coach Antonio Pierce, as he leads the team out of the bye week for the first times at the helm of a franchise. If Pierce and the Raiders have a good gameplan going into this one, there is no reason why they cannot secure the victory in front of the home crowd.
1. Dobbs vs O'Connell
Both starting quarterbacks are playing for their jobs in this one, and while Aidan O'Connell will likely be the starter the rest of the 2023 regular season, his future is cloudy with the team. Dobbs, on the other hand, is likely getting his final shot to show he can be the starter for the Vikings this season, so there is a lot at stake for both signal-callers in this one.
O'Connell and Dobbs have an elite wide receiver on the roster, as the Vikings will counter Davante Adams with Justin Jefferson. In the end, it will be which quarterback makes the fewest mistakes which will likely decide the outcome on Sunday.