NFL Playoff Picture: Broncos Loss Opens Door a Crack for Raiders

After the Denver Broncos' 40-14 loss to the Buffalo Bills on Saturday, the Oakland Raiders' window of opportunity has been opened slightly.

After the Raiders defeated the Kansas City Chiefs in overtime, 16-13, they now have a shot to win the division in Week 17.

Two things would have to happen in Week 17 for the Raiders to capture the division. One, the Broncos would have to lose to the Chiefs. Secondly, the Raiders would have to beat the San Diego Chargers.

While a Broncos loss to the Chiefs may seem far-fetched, the Chiefs have been playing better in the last two weeks under interim head coach Romeo Crennel. They beat the Green Bay Packers in Week 15, ending the Packers' quest for a perfect record. And they almost beat the Raiders in Week 16.

As for the Raiders beating the Chargers, they clearly have a shot. The Chargers, while more in rhythm recently, have been inconsistent all season long. You never know which team is going to show up.

The Raiders already beat the Chargers in San Diego this season, 24-17, so beating them in "The Black Hole" is entirely possible.

What it means is that we're going to have a riveting final week of the NFL season, with multiple playoff spots still open.

After the whole NFL lockout, all the bickering and all the frustration, we are being reminded once again as fans why we continue to put up with it all: This game is just too thrilling, unpredictable and mind-boggling to stop watching.


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