Oakland Raiders Week 8: Pressures, Hurries and Knockdowns

Oh Raiders, how you confuse and confound us so.

One week the Pop Warner-like offense is stalled by the San Francisco 49ers in a putrid effort leading to an uninspired loss.

The next week, they look like the Oregon Ducks on offense and roll over a division rival, putting up the most points in franchise history and showing everyone that this offense is no longer of the bed and breakfast variety.

Which team is the Oakland Raiders? As always, when an entity fluctuates between two extremes, the answer lies somewhere in the middle.

I'll tell you which team the Raiders are not: the Oakland Raiders of the past seven years. Sure, there are still glimpses, but they are becoming fewer and farther between, like a drunken hook-up that still calls once in a while no matter how many times you change your number.

The Raiders showed last week that when all three phases of the team play with intensity and focus, they can accomplish good things. That bodes well going into the future.

This is a big game, as a win would put them at 4-4 and keep them in the thick of the division race. If the Raiders beat the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday and even if the Kansas City Chiefs beat the Buffalo Bills, the Raiders will still have a chance to pull within a half game when Kansas City rolls into Oakland next weekend.

This Raider team has the distinct advantage of playing in the Black Hole on Halloween. The stars are aligning nicely, as the Seahawks aren't nearly as good on the road as they are at Qwest Field.

The vibe is once again good around the Raiders, but there are still some things that need addressing this weekend if they hope to come away with a victory. With that in mind, here are this week's pressures, hurries and knockdowns.

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