With the emergence of the Kansas City Chiefs, the AFC is now deeper than a two-team race between the Steelers and Patriots. The Broncos suddenly have a run defense, and are 3-1. Deshaun Watson is clearly going to be a factor. Heck, the 3-1 Buffalo Bills look impressive, and … wait, you know who nobody is talking about?
The Oakland Raiders.
They’re 2-2, but just lost their starting QB, Derek Carr, for 2-6 weeks. The schedule isn’t favorable:
vs 2-2 Baltimore
vs 0-4 LA Chargers
vs 3-0 Kansas City
at 3-1 Buffalo
at 1-2 Miami
They’ll definitely need Carr back after the bye, because they’ve got back-to-back games against the Patriots and Broncos. The season could be over by then.
The Raiders defense remains atrocious, and they’ll need to go 2-3 at a minimum without Carr to have a shot at the playoffs. Are you confident EJ Manuel can win on the road? I’m not so sure he can beat the Ravens, who aren’t very good.
The Chargers are an impressive 0-4 team, and have lost four straight to the Raiders, so revenge will be at play. The Chiefs are better than the Raiders with Derek Carr; they’re probably a touchdown better on the road against EJ Manuel.
It feels like the season is on the verge of being lost for the Raiders.