AFC Playoff Picture: What Do Oakland Raiders Need to Win AFC West?
The Oakland Raiders still have a chance to win the AFC West in Week 17 as long as they take care of business against the San Diego Chargers and get a little bit of help. If the Raiders beat the Chargers, the 8-7 Denver Broncos would either have to lose to or tie the Kansas City Chiefs for Oakland to take the title. If the Raiders happen to tie the Chargers, the Broncos would then have to lose to the Chiefs for Oakland to secure the title.
So for the 8-7 Raiders, the first thing they need to do is to beat the 7-8 Chargers. Unfortunately for Oakland, San Diego has been playing much better football over the past month and except for a 38-10 blowout loss to the Detroit Lions in Week 16, the Chargers have looked very good.
The Raiders managed to beat San Diego 24-17 on the road in Week 10 and quarterback Carson Palmer looked really good against the Bolts' suspect secondary. Oakland will need Michael Bush to play a great game and gash the Chargers up front to open the game, which should open things up in the secondary for Palmer and his receivers.
Essentially, the Raiders will have to use the same script they did the first time the teams locked up.
While the Raiders are busy taking care of business, they will need the rival Chiefs to dispose of the Broncos. Considering that Tim Tebow's team has been smoked by a combined 44 points over the past two weeks, that certainly isn't out of the question.
The Chiefs will be playing for interim head coach Romeo Crennel, who many of the players apparently want to get the job permanently. That means Kansas City won't just roll over for the Broncos, who will be playing at home.
It will be tough, but the Raiders can certainly still win the AFC West. If they take care of business, then all that will be left is to hope their rivals take care of the Broncos.
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