Denver Broncos, Oakland Raiders Primed for Early AFC West Showdown

The Denver Broncos and Oakland Raiders will meet at Sports Authority Field in Denver on Sunday afternoon. Both the Broncos and Raiders will be looking to rebound from disappointing losses in week three. Denver appeared to sleep walk through the game against Buffalo and paid dearly for it. Meanwhile, Oakland was obliterated by the Redskins.

Despite subpar week three performances, Denver and Oakland are still favorites to make the playoffs. This matchup will go a long way towards setting up the pecking order in the daunting AFC West. The Chiefs are currently the cream of the crop with Denver and Oakland jockeying for second.


Oakland’s offensive line struggled mightily agianst Washington. Now, they get to face Von Miller and the Denver Broncos dominant defense. Denver boasts one of the league’s best pass defenses and arguably the league’s best secondary. Denver’s weakness had been stopping the run, but their run defense appears to me much improved in 2017. The Denver defense has held opponents to 75,64, and 40 rushing yards through three games so far this season.

Denver’s offense was bad against Buffalo. Trevor Siemian failed his first road test of the 2017 season. Luckily, Denver will get to return home for the early season contest with Oakland. Siemian has looked excellent in Denver’s two home games. However, the Broncos have yet to face a pass rusher with the abilities of Khalil Mack. Mack will go at Menelik Watson all night, which could spell disaster for Denver.

Keys to Success:

  • Early success on the ground with C.J. Anderson
  • Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders continue playing their best.
  • O-Line protect Siemian
  • Get Jamaal Charles the ball in space more
  • Get pressure on Derek Carr
  • Keep tight coverage on the Raiders receiving corps and force them to make tough receptions. The Raiders have been plagued by dropped passes.
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Denver 24- Oakland 16

John Gillon

John Gillon

Author at SportsTalkLine
Denver Broncos Senior Analyst providing - hopefully - non-biased, intelligent analysis. An example: Denver has been less than optimal at the quarterback position.