Oakland Raiders vs. Denver Broncos: 4 Reasons the Raiders Must Win

Bill HintonCorrespondent INovember 6, 2011

Oakland Raiders vs. Denver Broncos: 4 Reasons the Raiders Must Win

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    When the AFC West-leading Oakland Raiders host the Denver Broncos today, the season may be on the line for the Raiders.

    With a tough second-half schedule, the Raiders will need to take advantage of any team that seems like an easy mark.

    However, this game is about more than just picking up a victory. We'll examine why and try to get a handle on the "new look" Oakland Raiders

1. Getting Carson Palmer in a Comfort Zone

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    It wasn't supposed to go down like this!

    Carson Palmer should never have become an Oakland Raider.

    Here he is, though, making his first start after (hopefully) picking up a good portion of the offense during the bye week.

    Admittedly, I'm a Jason Campbell fan and was looking forward to seeing him continue to lead this team forward over the next few years.

    Like The Stones said, though, "You can't always get what you want!" So, being a Raider fan, I'm going to roll with Carson and hope we get what we need!

    Hopefully the running game and defense will make it easy for Palmer to get in a comfort zone and build up some confidence for the tougher challenges that lie ahead.

2. Build Momentum for the Thursday Showdown in San Diego

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    I fully expect the Raiders and Chargers to be tied in the standings when they meet Thursday night—tied at 5-3, not 4-4.

    I'll say it right now. San Diego beats Green Bay today!

    The Packers have never, ever won a game I really wanted them to win.

    I still shudder at the sight of John Elway holding his first Super Bowl trophy. Thanks, Green Bay!

    It's the Chiefs who slip today against the winless Dolphins. I have that on good authority from an extremely hot, super-intelligent Dolphins fan who sometimes lets me call her my girlfriend!

    The Raiders must hold up their end today to set up the showdown for sole possession of the AFC West lead come Thursday.

3. Come on Man! It's Tebow!

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    I'll say this once again—if you're a Broncos fan reading this, send me an email and I'll go over it slowly.

    Tim Tebow will never, ever be a successful NFL quarterback.

    Doesn't mean I'm not a fan of JC (Christ, not Campbell here) either.

    It means I know a little bit about this game. Just like everyone else—except the Tebow apologists.

    This shouldn't be tough. Pressure him all day and don't quit.

    The Dolphins would have shut him out if they hadn't gone in to prevent in the fourth quarter, and the Lions were just nice enough to call off the dogs late in the game, one even preyed for him. How sweet!

    Seriously, if the Raiders can't beat Tebow, any and all talk of the playoffs must cease!

4. Validation for Hue Jackson

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    I love Hue Jackson.

    I love the enthusiasm, the swagger and the mentality he wants to build. That's Hue Jackson the coach.

    Hue Jackson the personnel guy hasn't shown me much yet.

    The Palmer trade reeked of desperation, and the cutting of Derreck Hagen—a special teams standout and solid extra receiver for an aging T.J. Houshmandzadeh—brings memories of the Al Davis "scholarship program" now implemented for homeless ex-Bengals. Can Rudi Johnson still play?

    I want to believe, though!

    A big day from Palmer and any kind of contribution from Houshmandzadeh would go a long way toward pleasing this Raiders fan, and my belief that Jackson is capable of "buying the groceries" as well as "cooking the meal!"


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    This is a game the Raiders should win.

    It really shouldn't even be close.

    They don't play the game on paper, though, so they must go out and get it done on the field.

    I'll be watching this game with some Broncos fans, so it should be a lot of fun today! Just Win Baby!

    Raiders 37 Broncos 13