Game Overview ::
By mike johnson >>
- The Raiders are fresh off winning the “Irrelevant Bowl” over a Broncos team that just refused to find a way to win.
- The Raiders defense has given up 20+ points in every game this season except last week.
- The Seahawks are tied for the lead in the NFC West and are coming off their bye week.
- The Raiders defense ranks dead last in pass defense DVOA and second to last in PFF tackling grade.
How LAS VEGAS Will Try To Win ::
The Raiders continue to be an entertaining team to watch for the casual fan, even if they are wildly frustrating for their own fans. Eight of the ten Raiders games this season have been decided by one possession, with the only exceptions being Weeks 7 and 8 when they pulled away in the fourth quarter from the Texans, and then were boat raced by the Saints while Davante Adams was severely limited by illness. This week they travel to a hostile road environment in Seattle against a Seahawks team that has surprised many this season and is coming off a bye week, following a loss to the Bucs in London.
The Raiders offense continues to flow heavily through two players – Josh Jacobs and Davante Adams. That pairing has combined for 67% or more of the team’s usage (carries plus targets) for three consecutive weeks and nothing about this matchup would indicate a reason for the Raiders to alter that approach. The Raiders operate at a methodical tempo (26th in the league in situation-neutral pace) and throw the ball at a slightly below expected rate. This week they face a Seahawks defense that has been up and down this season and ranks in the middle of the pack against both the run and the pass. The Seahawks are facing the most plays per game of any team in the league this season, meaning the Raiders (who average a very modest 60.6 plays per game) could be in line for a spike in play volume.
From a philosophical standpoint, the Raiders appear to be focused on “establishing the run” early in games, with Jacobs seeing a ton of work on the first couple of possessions. There is also obviously a focus on getting Adams involved, with the rest of their skill players being used sparingly and mixed in more as they get deeper into games as teams focus on taking away the two primary weapons. In a hostile environment, we should expect the Raiders to come out of the gate conservatively and they may struggle with the crowd noise and chaos, which will lead to a slow pace of play. While the Seahawks defense isn’t a world beater, it will be plenty prepared for the Raiders considering they have an extra week of preparation, and the Raiders will need to make some adjustments quickly to keep things from getting out of hand early.
How SEATTLE Will Try To Win ::
Mike Johnson >>>
- Kenneth Walker is my favorite player from this game, and one of my top players on the slate. The game just sets up too well for him from a matchup and game environment perspective for me to not be excited about his talent.
- I suspect that one of DK Metcalf or Tyler Lockett will have a very good game here. Hard to say which one, but it seems unlikely that with their talent the Raiders are able to hold them both down.
- Geno Smith will likely have a good game, but given how well I expect Walker to play I don’t expect to play much Smith as I think it limits his ceiling. Also, I’d rather pay down for Tom Brady or pay up for Burrow/Tua for greater ceilings in similar price range with lower ownership.
- On the Raiders side, it is just Jacobs or Adams for me. I strongly prefer Adams, especially with Jacobs being added to the injury report on Friday. They aren’t “must plays” due to their price tags, but at least one of them is very likely to score 25+.
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