#470 Oakland Raidersvs.#469 Los Angeles Chargers
Written by Ricky Dimon
When: Sunday, October 9 at 4:25 p.m. EST
The Line: Oakland Raiders -4. Total: 50.5.
The Oakland Raiders will be trying to extend their winning streak to three games when they host the San Diego Chargers at O.co Coliseum on Sunday afternoon. Oakland has bounced back from a home loss to Atlanta with consecutive victories over Tennessee and Baltimore. The Chargers are heading into this AFC West rivalry game on the heels of two straight losses at the hands of Indianapolis and New Orleans.
San Diego head coach Mike McCoy was understandably beside himself following last week’s 35-34 home loss to the Saints. His team led by 13 points with less than five minutes remaining only to collapse down the stretch. The Chargers even had the ball to go along with their 13-point cushion with less than seven minutes left, but they fumbled on consecutive possessions. Two touchdowns in the final 4:50 gave New Orleans an improbable victory.
“(I’m) furious,” McCoy barked. “It’s a major disappointment. You get the lead we had and to fall apart–a major disappointment. Frustration is an understatement. I can’t say right now in this microphone how I really, truly feel.”
The Chargers fell to 3-12 in games decided by eight points or fewer dating back to last season. Their three setbacks so far in 2016 have come by a combined 11 points.
The Raiders showcased their special teams, defense, and offense to seize a 7-0 first-quarter lead on the way to a Week 4 victory over Baltimore. Punter Marquette King pinned the Ravens on their own five-yard line, Oakland forced a three-and-out, Jalen Richard return the ensuing punt 47 yards to the six-yard line, and Derek Carr tossed a touchdown pass to Seth Roberts.
“That’s exactly what we’re talking about,” head coach Jack Del Rio said on Monday. “All three phases playing complementary football, impacting the game, and it’s about us and our team and what we’re able to do when those three phases work together like that. That’s a great example of it.”
The offense, with went three for three on touchdowns in the red zone, was especially productive against Baltimore–just as it has been all season. Carr threw for just 199 yards last weekend, but he completed an efficient 25 of 35 attempts and finished with four touchdowns compared to zero interceptions. Through four contests, Carr is 104-of-153 for 1,066 yards with nine TDs and one INT.
The San Diego Chargers are:
The Oakland Raiders are:
The Chargers’ inability to close out opponents in the fourth quarter is a big reason why they are 5-15 in their last 20 games dating back to the 2015 campaign. They have been especially hopeless against AFC West rivals, of which Oakland is obviously one. In fact, the Bolts are 0-9 in their last nine divisional outings. As for the Raiders, they are firing in all three phases this year and have lost only to the 3-1 Falcons. San Diego is 4-10 ATS in its last 14 against Oakland, 1-7 ATS in its last eight in October, and 2-5 ATS in its last seven Week 5 outings. The Raiders are 4-1 ATS in their last five overall and 8-2 ATS in their last 10 against the AFC. Count on those trends continuing in what will likely be another close loss for the Chargers…but not closer than four points.
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A 2006 graduate of Davidson College, Ricky is a freelance sports writer based in Atlanta, Georgia. He has previously worked with various websites in the sports handicapping industry and is generally a fan of going with the hot hand while in most cases showing a willingness to take favorites and give the points. Beyond the four major sports, Ricky is an avid tennis fan—and writer—and covers the ATP Tour on a daily basis.