Raiders Make 1st Playoff Appearance Since Super Bowl Run
Posted by: Anthony Yaylor
Two weeks ago the Kansas City Chiefs beat the Oakland Raiders and emerged as the leader in the AFC West. But this past weekend Kansas City slipped up and suffered an embarrassing 19-17 loss to the Tennessee Titans. Meanwhile, the Oakland Raiders took care of business against the San Diego Chargers and with that win the Raiders were able to oust the Chiefs from the No. 1 spot in the West, and they were also able to clinch a playoff berth. Now it’s nothing but smooth sailing for the Raiders and since they’ve guaranteed themselves a ticket to the postseason, Oakland can sit back, relax and enjoy the remaining 2 NFL betting weeks.
Interestingly enough, this year marks the first time that the Raiders have been able to clinch a playoff berth in 14 years. The last time they made a playoff appearance, Oakland was able to make it all the way to the Super Bowl, before losing to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Raiders still have a long way to go before making it to this year’s Super Bowl, but once in the playoffs this team can certainly be dangerous. But first, Oakland must contend with their Week 16 opponent. Now that they’ve clinched a spot in the postseason, what kind of chances will most sportsbooks give the playoff bound Raiders this Saturday?
NFL Odds – Week 16 – Saturday, December 24th
Oakland Raiders -3½ (-115) 53 (-115)
In Week 16 the Raiders will be welcoming the Indianapolis Colts to California to face off at the Oakland Alameda Coliseum. With how things are shaping up around the league, this contest may mark one of the last times that the Raiders will be playing in Oakland. But at the very least, Oakland will be coming into this contest as NFL betting favorites.
The Colts will be coming into this contest at 7-7 with a 4-3 record on the road. The Raiders are 5-2 at home and 11-3 on the season. Now that Oakland has once again claimed the top spot in the AFC West, you can be certain that they’ll do everything in power to retain that position. NFL betting fans know the Colts aren’t exactly what you would consider a dangerous team, but since they embarrassed the Vikings this past weekend Indianapolis will be coming into this contest with their heads held high.
Looking over both these teams’ numbers, it’s clear that the Raiders will have the advantage this Saturday. Behind Derek Carr’s MVP-caliber season, the Raiders have the 6th best passing offense, the 6th best total offense, and the 6th best rushing offense. That’s a lot of sixes, but luckily the Raiders have the 3rd best scoring average in the NFL. Since the Colts have the 27th worst passing defense, 20th worst running defense, and 27th worst total defense, the Raiders shouldn’t have any difficulty winning this Sunday.
Even though Oakland has already clinched a playoff berth, they still have goals to accomplish this weekend. Specifically, the Raiders can try to lock up the first round bye. Having to play one less eliminatory contest always increases your chances of appearing in the Super Bowl. And considering how shoddy the Raiders defense looks on paper, Oakland can use any help they can get.