Oakland Raiders’ Path To The Playoffs-Part 2

Things are about to get very interesting!

Assuming I am correct in part one of this series, the Oakland Raiders will enter the second quarter of the season at 4-0. This would be a good thing for the Raiders as the first four-game stretch might be the easiest stretch they have. Let's see how the next four play out.

Week Five: The San Diego Chargers

The first divisional test for the Raiders is in The Black Hole, which is good. Unfortunately this early test doesn't come against the Chiefs or Broncos, but against the most recent Kings of the AFC West mountain, the San Diego Chargers.

There is no doubt that the Chargers are one of the best passing offenses in the league. Pro Bowl quarterback Phillip Rivers throwing to one of the most underrated wide receivers in the game, Vincent Jackson, makes the Chargers a tough match up for any team. The Raiders are no exception.

Oakland's secondary must play disciplined, not bite on double moves, or allow Jackson or Legadu Naanee to get behind them. Putting a lot of pressure on Rivers will go a long way to prevent that. If the Raiders can get Rivers on the ground early and often, their chances of winning are greatly increased.

What killed the Raiders the last time they played the Chargers was paying too much attention to Antonio Gates and Vincent Jackson. That allowed Darren Sproles to work himself wide open over the short middle. Rivers exploited that and "dinked and dunked" his way to first downs and ran the clock out late in the game.

If the Raiders expect to win, they absolutely must control the clock with Michael Bush and the running game; passing only when necessary.

The Chargers have a good pass rush and secondary, so punishing the middle of their front seven should bring the safeties into the box, then Jason Campbell can exploit them with the deep play action pass.

I might be alone on this, but I feel like the Raiders ...

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