In game that will have more of an effect on next year’s draft than the playoffs, the Oakland Raiders host the Kansas City Chiefs Sunday at O.co Coliseum.
Both teams have had their struggles this season, and are assured of a Top 10 to 15 pick in the draft.
The 3-10 Raiders have lost six straight in part to a defense that surrenders a league-low 30.9 points per game, and 390 total yards a game.
Oakland has also struggled to run the ball this season, and only gained 61 yards on the ground in their 26-13 loss to the Denver Broncos last week. Running back Darren McFadden returned after missing four straight games with an ankle injury, and gained a team-high 52 yards on 11 carries, and caught a six-yard touchdown pass.
Quarterback Carson Palmer went 19-for-30 for 273 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Oakland may have spoiled a strong season from Palmer, whose seventh in the league in passing yards with 3,805 yards and 22 touchdowns.
The 2-11 Chiefs haven’t been as lucky in terms of quarterback play, but running back Jamaal Charles is on pace for a new career-high in yards, and is currently riding a three-game streak of 100-yard games.
Last week, Charles ripped off an 80 yard touchdown run on Kansas City’s first play from scrimmage, but that was the last time they would reach pay dirt in a 30-7 loss to the Cleveland Browns.
Charles would finish with 165 yards on 18 carries, but the Chiefs would punt on seven of their 12 drives, and went 1-for-11 on third down.
Quarterback Brady Quinn went 10-for-21 for 159 yards, and has just two touchdowns to five interceptions this season since taking over for Matt Cassel.
Quinn and Kansas City’s second to last ranked passing offense may continue to flounder with top receiver Dwayne Bowe placed on injured reserve earlier this week with rib injury. Bowe had 59 receptions for 801 yards and three touchdowns this year.
The game begins at 4:25 p.m. EDT and will be shown by CBS, or watch a live stream online by purchasing NFL Sunday Ticket Max.
Betting Odds: Oakland is favored by 3 points
Over/Under: 44 points
Prediction: Charles should have another strong game, but so will McFadden. Look for Palmer to lead Oakland to their fourth win of the season.
Predicted Score: Oakland 17, Kansas City 13