The wild AFC West is a division up for grabs. Late in the season, three teams all have a shot of sitting on top of the division by season’s end. Two of those teams face off in Kansas City on Sunday. If the Oakland Raiders want to keep their playoff hopes alive, a win against the Kansas City Chiefs is a must. Kansas City has been on a downward spiral lately, while Oakland has won two games in a row. Whenever a divisional matchup takes place, anything can happen. These are the week 14 Oakland Raiders keys to victory.
Week 14 Oakland Raiders Keys To Victory
Take Advantage of Peters Suspension
Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters will be serving a one game suspension for his antics in last weeks game against the New York Jets. Peters is the best corner on the Chiefs, and his suspension should be a huge blow to Kansas City’s secondary. Even with Peters in the lineup the last time they played Oakland, quarterback Derek Carr shredded the defense with over 400 yards and three touchdowns. A Kansas City defense with no Peters could potentially spell disaster.
Newly signed Chiefs corner Darrelle Revis will see significant more playing time. Oakland would be smart to attack the backup corners. Wide receiver Michael Crabtree will be returning from his one game suspension, and Amari Cooper might also play after missing last week due to injury. Oakland needs to take advantage of their matchups and attack a weakened Chiefs secondary.
Oakland’s defense has had serious problems this season. One of them being their lack of forced turnovers. The team’s first recorded interception didn’t come until week 12. Khalil Mack is a one-man wrecking crew, but it will take more than him to get the defense back on track. Oakland’s secondary has yet to record an interception. Keeping the ball away from Kansas City’s explosive weapons will favor the Raiders.
Quarterback Alex Smith is known for taking care of the ball, but during the Chiefs recent slump, he has thrown three interception in two of their last three games. Getting interceptions, and recovering fumbles will not only help build up Oakland’s confidence, it will tear down Kansas City’s.
Play Around With Patterson
Cordarrelle Patterson might have been one of the most underrated free agent signings this season. The Minnesota Vikings didn’t seem to know how to use Patterson, and ultimately his numbers didn’t look impressive. However, when the ball is in his hands, he can change a game. There have been a handful of times this season when Patterson has made some spectacular plays to help the Raiders either put points on the board, or even win the game.
Offensive coordinator Todd Downing needs to keep finding more and more ways to get Patterson the ball. Especially since it is still uncertain if Cooper will play this week. His speed alone can strike fear into a defense. Patterson is the x-factor of the Raiders; he can do it all. Utilizing Patterson as much as possible will help the Raiders win this game.