The Las Vegas Raiders and Kansas City Chiefs are set to do battle on Monday Night Football in the NFL’s Week 5 slate. For the Raiders, the season is on the line. If they lose, they go 1-4 into their bye week with the playoffs likely an impossibility. Meanwhile, the Chiefs are dominating the AFC West again. In a division where the Denver Broncos were clearly overrated and the Los Angeles Chargers currently decimated by injuries, the Chiefs are the team to beat in 2022. Looking ahead to Monday, here are a few interesting stats involving both teams in this heated rivalry.
Raiders vs. Chiefs: A one-sided affair
The rivalry between the Raiders and the Chiefs is as old as the NFL itself. However, in the modern era, the Chiefs have been led by Andy Reid since 2013. During that run, the team has dominated the Silver and Black. As Josh Dubow of the Associated Press noted, the Raiders have been outscored by 260 points in 18 contests. The record, you ask? It’s 15-3. More than anything, this speaks to the lack of progress we have had in those years. While the Chiefs have won a Super Bowl in two trips to the big game, the Raiders have only limped into the playoffs twice.
Can Derek Carr throw for more than two touchdowns on Monday night?
There’s been much debate regarding how the Raiders should attack the Chiefs’ defense. Josh Jacobs is currently on fire, especially after running through the Broncos’ run defense. On the other hand, should Josh McDaniels dial up some plays down the field for Davante Adams? Here’s the thing: Dubow pointed out that the Raiders are 26-19 when Carr throws for more than two touchdowns. Perhaps that’ll be the magic number for Carr and the Raiders. One thing’s for sure, he has no shortage of weapons at the moment. Time to let the Chiefs’ defense have it.
Defending the pass isn’t a strength for the Chiefs
Speaking of the Chiefs’ pass defense, not all is well with that part of the gameplan. Kansas City has surrendered 10 touchdowns through the air, which right now is good for 30th in the league. As mentioned before, the magic number for Carr is two touchdowns. It won’t come easy, especially if the Chiefs’ stout run defense shuts down Jacobs, who then forces Carr to throw it. Will the Chiefs have enough defensive backs to cover all of the Raiders’ weapons?
Raiders vs. Chiefs: Derek Carr’s third-down pass conversion percentage is 37.1%
One of the keys to beating the Chiefs is to keep Patrick Mahomes off of the field. The most obvious way to do this will be to convert third downs. Carr is currently converting 37.1 percent of his third-down passes heading into Monday night, ranking 19th in the NFL, according to Dubow. Luckily for Carr, if Renfrow is back, combined with Mack Hollins and Darren Waller, he’ll have tons of options in trying to keep drives alive.
What about the Chiefs’ rushing attack?
An overlooked matchup in this game right now is how the Raiders’ run defense will hold up. The Chiefs feature two talented young running backs in Clyde Edwards-Helaire and Isiah Pacheco. The eye-popping number when it comes to these two is five, as in they’re both averaging more than five yards a carry. It’ll be something worth monitoring on Monday night, especially with regard to the interior defensive line of the Raiders.
*Top Photo: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports