Oakland Raiders vs. San Diego Chargers: Should the Chargers Be Favored By 12?

Oakland Raiders at San Diego Chargers
Sunday December 5, 2010 4:05 PM EST
Line: San Diego -12


The Chargers have made a habit of starting out the season slow and finishing with a full head of steam. After going 2-5, the Chargers have won four in a row. They will look to extend that streak to five this week by knocking off the Oakland Raiders.

The Raiders got the best of the Chargers in their first outing, winning by eight, but after losing two games the way they have, it seems as though the tides have turned since the last time these two teams squared off.

Keys to the Game

What happened to Darren McFadden? He has 18 attempts for 16 yards in his last two games. After running at will against opposing defenses, McFadden has regressed into a sub par runner.

If the Raiders are going to win this game, they will need the Darren McFadden who ran for 100 or more yards four times this season. The Raiders offense begins and ends with Run DMC. The passing game is simply a product of how the running game is going.

Mike Tolbert has a bruised right hand and is listed as questionable. Whenever a running back has a hand or lower arm injury, there are questions about ball security. It does appear that Tolbert will be able to give it a go.

This is good for the Chargers, as Tolbert has posted back to back 100 yard games and has become everything they had hoped Ryan Matthews would be this season. Matthews returns to the lineup this week, but how many touches he will get is yet to be seen.

Jacoby Ford has used his blazing speed to rack up two 100 yard games in his last three appearances. On top of that he has proved he can be dangerous in the return game. The Chargers aren’t going to be able to ignore the threat Ford poses. He has world-class speed and is changing the course of games with it.

When people think "elite" quarterback, very few people ...

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