5 Reasons Why Oakland Raiders Will Leave Buffalo 2-0
It looks like the media is drinking the Buffalo Bills' Kool-Aid after their Week 1 blowout of the Kansas City Chiefs. It's crazy for the media to make such a prediction based on the previous week, because the Raiders are a far cry from the Chiefs.
The old boxing saying is "styles make fights" and the saying also applies to football or any type of contest. This is why I'm predicting a win for the Raiders over the Bills Sunday after the Bills looked like world-beaters against the Chiefs.
Turn the page to see exactly why.
After watching the Bills and Chiefs on tape, I came to the conclusion that I had just watched two teams that are as soft as grapes. In stark contrast to the Monday night affair between the Broncos and Raiders, there wasn't much in the way hard hits in the game.
The most physical ball player on the field that night was Bills' running back Fred Jackson. Jackson had 112 yards and 20 carries, running through the pillow soft tackles of the Chiefs' defense.
The Bills are going to be in for a shock when they feel the physicality of the Raiders on both sides of the ball.
The Oakland Raiders are a much more resilient team than the Chiefs as shown in both of their openers. The Raiders were on the road in a hostile environment and fumbled on their first play from scrimmage deep in Raiders' territory.
The Raider defense then went into the game, held the Broncos to three, and the battle had just started from there. The Chiefs were just the opposite, fumbling the opening kickoff, then seemingly going into the tank at home.
The difference in mentality will be big.
The Running Game
The Bills were ranked No. 32 against the run in 2010, so I can't see them stopping the 2010's No. 2 rushing attack. But they stopped the No. 1 rushing team from 2010 en route to a 41-0 blowout.
The Chiefs had six-yard per carry average against the Bills, but couldn't stay with the running game. Three turnovers led to the Chiefs having to play from behind, leaving no room to run the ball.
The Raiders secured the ball pretty well, so I don't think turnovers will put the Raiders so far behind early. This will make it possible for Darren McFadden and Michael Bush to take over this game.
The Raiders' rushing attack vs. the Bills' run defense is what will decide who wins the game.
I like the Raiders in that matchup.
I don't expect Raiders' starting quarterback Jason Campbell to throw for 500 yards, but he will have a good game. The Bills are going to be conscious of the running game and bite on play-action fakes, leading to the Raiders' fast receivers getting behind the defense.
The protection Campbell has had from the preseason has been stellar, so don't look for Campbell to be rattled the way Matt Cassel was last week. Shawn Merriman is all the Bills have for a pass rush, too, so Campbell will have plenty of time Sunday.
Campbell missed a couple of throws Monday night, but I fully expect him to be on point this coming Sunday.
Getting tight end Kevin Boss back will help, too.
One thing we no for sure is Campbell isn't going to mess it up.
The Bills have won seven of the eight games when Jackson rushes for more than 100 yards, but don't expect that. Quentin Groves, in his second year playing linebacker, is getting comfortable there, so I believe that weakness has been solved.
Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick was 17 of 25 for 208 yards, four touchdowns and 133.0 quarterback rating.
Wow! Fitzpatrick has arrived.
He may have along with Jackson, but it's not going to show in the game on Sunday. Stanford Routt is looking like a shutdown corner, while Chris Johnson is hanging in there and not 100 percent, yet.
If Michael Huff can't play, I trust Matt Giordano to fill in and do the job. The only thing about that is the Raiders will need rookies Chimdi Chekwa and Demarcus Van Dyke to play corner in the nickel.
They played well in Denver, so I trust them as long as they aren't guarding the No. 1 and No. 2 receivers. However, the real reason why the Bills aren't going to be able to do much on offense is the Raiders' defensive line.
The Raiders have the best defensive line in football, so holes to run through and time to throw will be scarce.
Here's the $1 million question: Who's going to block Richard Seymour?
The Raiders are a much more physical team than the Buffalo Bills, so Week 1 won't matter Sunday. Just remember the Bills gave up six yards per carry in a blowout win, making things look real good for the Raiders.
Let me bring an x-factor into this equation.
Marcel Reece is going to make a play that impacts this game just like he did last Monday.
Then you can look at the Bills' offensive line against the Raiders defensive line, run or pass. Jackson won't get to build up a full head of steam and Fitzpatrick may not make it through the whole game.
That's all I'm going to say about that, because if you don't win on the line of scrimmage, you can't win at all.
Therefore, the Bills won't beat the Raiders.