The Las Vegas Raiders enter Week 7 riding high after a big divisional road win in Denver. They defeated the Broncos, 34-24. They’ll now return home to face the 2-4 Philadelphia Eagles. As a Raiders fan, this synopsis alone should sound concerning to you.
The Raiders are notorious for the trap game loss after a big win, and Sunday has all the ingredients to provide such a situation. The Eagles might be an under .500 club, but they’ve had a tough schedule and have been a tough out for every opponent.
Interim coach Rich Bisaccia won with house money in Denver…
Many people predicted the Raiders would come into Week 6 with an adrenaline boost that would lead them to a win. First-time head coach Rich Bisaccia just had to keep the reins on the emotional Silver and Black tide. It’s a lot easier to be the underdog than it is to control overconfidence. The Raiders will be favored to win against the Eagles, and on paper, they should. However, they were also expected to trounce the Bears two weeks ago, and we all recall how that went.
It doesn’t get any easier for rookie Alex Leatherwood…
After dealing with Anthony Davis-level growing pains at right tackle, the Raiders decided to kick the Alabama product inside to guard; the position he should be playing in the NFL. While he did perform better against Denver, Sunday will bring two problems right to Alex’s front doorstep.
The Eagles have one of the NFL’s best interior defensive line combinations in Javon Hargrave and Fletcher Cox, two seasoned veterans with major pass-rushing chops. The offensive line had perhaps its best overall performance against Denver; however, Cox and Hargrave will be looking to bring the noise.
Can the Raiders deal with Jalen Hurts’ mobility?
Second-year quarterback Jalen Hurts has gotten a lot of flack for his play so far this season. However, given what we’ve seen this year, Hurts could help exploit big issues for the Raider defense. The Raiders have shown they aren’t very susceptible to big passing plays, but extended plays have hurt them on more than one occasion. All due respect to Jacoby Brissett, but if the Miami backup could leave multiple Raiders on skates in the open field, Hurts has to be licking his chops. Gus Bradley has to have fail-safes in place to keep Hurts from picking this defense apart with his legs.
*Top Photo: Associated Press/Rick Scuteri