Raiders-Chargers: Battle For The AFC West Crown: The Defense Rules

"All warfare is based on deception," Sun Tzu wrote in his classic military manifesto, "The Art Of War." And few people know that better than NFL coaches. If teams won games based on predictions or by having the more skilled players, there would be no reason to play the game.

Alas, my theory for the Raiders dethroning the Chargers is simple, attack their strength—their QB. It is not a coincidence that the Raiders, after two preseason games, lead the league in sacks.

Make Phillip Rivers think of LaMarr Houston, or Matt Shaughnessy, or Kamerion Wimbley every time he drops back.


Strategic Point #1: "If he is taking his ease, give him no rest."—Art of War


Against a team with a good quarterback, don't let him have the ease of sitting in the pocket. The Raiders will blitz all day long, giving Rivers no time to rest, except on his backside. 


Strategic Point #2: If equally matched, you may engage him"—Art of War


The Chargers running game was horrid last year and they expect a rookie running back to re-charge it? The Raiders are reloaded as well with the best run-busting middle linebacker that collegiate sports had to offer, Butkus Award winner Rolando McClain, who will assure that Matthews is stopped in his tracks.


Strategic Point #3: "When five times his strength, attack him"—Art of War


If the Raiders are anything, it’s disciplined and strong. Expect the Raiders to flex their muscles against a less disciplined and weaker Chargers team sidetracked with internal contracts battles between prima donna Pro-Bowlers and cheapskate management. 

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