When the Oakland Raiders were blown right out of the water by Washington on Sunday Night Football, many began to question the legitimacy of this team.
Were the Titans just not ready for the season and the Raiders got lucky with their timing?
Were the Jets really just so bad that you can’t take much from a win, even a lopsided one?
Was Washington the only real test for the Raiders thus far?
I even saw Raiders fans questioning whether or not this team would be able to make the playoffs. And while those reactions may seem a bit over the top, it’s understandable given how thoroughly the team got waxed. We haven’t seen a beat down like this in the Jack Del Rio era. To find a game this poor in quality, you need to go back to the game in London that resulted in Dennis Allen being fired and a football being buried on the practice field.
But is it really that bad?
The short answer is that we won’t know until the Raiders take the field in Denver this upcoming Sunday.
Yes, it’s only one game and it only gets counted once in the win/loss columns. But if the Raiders are unable to get past the inevitable hangover from such a loss, then it’s impact is a whole lot more than just one game.
The Raiders need to find a way to bounce back against a Denver Broncos team whose secondary currently owns the Raiders receivers (and their gold chains). That’s a difficult task and if the Raiders are not mentally prepared, struggles early in the game could turn this into another blowout.
Denver isn’t the power house it was when it won the Super Bowl, but it’s a team that’s a whole lot better than the one the Raider faced last year. Their quarterback, Trevor Siemien, has continued to develop into a solid game manager. Meanwhile, the Broncos did a lot to address their one big weakness on defense: Defending the run.
If you recall, the Raiders ran all over the Broncos last year and dominated the game on the ground. This offseason, the Broncos took note and did a lot to address that hole. The result? An even more well rounded defense that not only includes an elite pass defense, but also a very solid run defense.
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