Preview: Oakland versus Kansas City

Coming off a win against Buffalo, the Oakland Raiders have continued their hot streak and look to catch up to New England for the number one seed in the playoffs. The Kansas City Chiefs on the other hand hold a wildcard spot and hope to hold on to it and make a good postseason run. This is a big game for both teams, and it could play a pivotal role in deciding each team’s playoff rankings.
Derek Carr’s injured finger didn’t seem to play a role in last week’s win against the Bills, as he was able to fight it off and have a great game. He moved the ball efficiently and the Oakland defense eventually got its act together to get him out onto the field as much as they could. However, Oakland overall still has a very poor defense, and Andy Reidâ’s West Coast scheme that he runs with the Chiefs is built to destroy the type of defense Oakland has. Oakland’s main weaknesses on defense are against the run and their linebackers, so not only will running the ball be effective, but short, quick passes will stop Raiders defensive ends Bruce Irvin and Khalil Mack from putting their pass rushing skills to good use. Khalil Mack had another big game against Buffalo, forcing the hit that led to Tyrod Taylor’s interception, and also the strip sack that sealed the game for the Raiders. He can be used all over the field, and coach Jack Del Rio will want to use his versatility in defending against the Kansas City Chiefs style of offense.
On defense the Chiefs have good players all around. An interesting player to watch will be Justin Houston, who has been a monster since he came back from injury. While the Raiders have given up the least sacks in the league, they have a noticeable weakness on the right side. The Chiefs may want to put Houston there to do the most damage, but they can switch it up due to teammate Tamba Hali being a very good pass rusher himself. An interesting matchup to watch will be Raiders wideout Amari Cooper against Chiefs corner Marcus Peters. Peters has a knack for being boom or bust at the corner position, and Amari Cooper is known to make great plays on deep routes. Do not be surprised if Peters gets an interception but also lets Cooper have a big game as well. It is also possible that Peters may protect one side and line up against Michael Crabtree on occasion, who is quite good as well. Just another story to watch this week, and it makes for a very exciting game.

On paper the Raiders have the better team, but the Chiefs are no pushovers. This should be a very competitive game, and both teams have their case for a win.

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Watch out for Oakland and Kansas City in 2016 AFC West

Oakland Raiders:

 The Oakland Raiders may have gone from among the worst teams in the NFL, to among the top teams in the National Football League. The world saw exactly what the Raiders might do last season, with its electrifying offense led by appealing quarterback Derek Carr, effective runningback Latavius Murray, and stud pass receiver Amari Cooper. They had a big turn-around last season, and now they’re about to get even much better. GM Reggie McKenzie made a big splash in free agency, signing offensive guard Kelechi Osemele from the Ravens, linebacker Bruce Irvin from the Seahawks, and cornerback Sean Smith from the Chiefs. Oakland’s lineup teems with stars, and it’s remarkable to see how this group has  altered a lot in such little time.

Kansas City Chiefs:

The Chiefs made an unbelievable comeback last season, beginning 1-5, and ending the reg season 11-5, then beating the Houston Texans in the Wild Card round, however to lose to New England in the Divisional Round. Still, beginning the season 1-5, then entering the playoffs, with a playoff win? An extraordinary season for Chiefs fans, no doubt. The Chiefs re-signed Tamba Hali, Travis Kelce, Charcandrick West and Spencer Ware, and franchise tagged Eric Berry. Basically, the Chiefs maintained their finest players, which needs to be thought about as an offseason success. With Jamaal Charles returning next season, the Chiefs ought to anticipate consistent success in the league.