Coming off their bye, our writers predict the Kansas City Chiefs to beat the Las Vegas Raiders in a key AFC West matchup.
The Kansas City Chiefs are coming off of their bye week to play a key AFC West showdown against the Las Vegas Raiders. These two teams played each other earlier in this season, and the Raiders stunned the Chiefs with a win at Arrowhead Stadium.
Now, the Chiefs will travel to Las Vegas to play their first game in Allegiant Stadium and play to protect their lead in the AFC West. The Chiefs are currently first in the AFC West and have a two game lead over the Raiders. However, if the Chiefs were to lose this matchup against the Raiders they would only have a one game lead and the race to win the AFC West would get much more interesting.
Before their bye week, the Chiefs narrowly beat the Carolina Panthers in a shootout. In that game, Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes took care of business by completing 30/45 passes for 372 yards and 4 touchdowns. Mahomes led the Chiefs to a 33-31 victory.
Last week, the Raiders cleaned up against the Denver Broncos in a game where their running backs could not be stopped. Running back Josh Jacobs rushed 21 times for 112 yards and 2 touchdowns while his fellow running back Devontae Booker rushed 16 times for 81 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Raiders run game could not be stopped and they won 37-12.
Both teams are facing injuries, but the Chiefs are facing the brunt of the injury bug. The Chiefs will be without wide receiver Sammy Watkins and offensive tackle Mitchell Schwartz once again, and will also be without defensive end Taco Charlton. The Chiefs just placed Schwartz and Charlton on injured reserve, meaning they will be out for at least the next three games. Offensive lineman Mike Remmers is also questionable for the game with a rib injury.
For the Raiders, only defensive tackle Maurice Hurst and running back Jalen Richard will be questionable. The Raiders struggled with COVID-19 this week, but have just been able to activate seven of their players from the COVID-19 list. Despite the Chiefs’ injury problems, our writers are believe they will win big.
Here’s a look at our full writer predictions:
Drew Brooks: Chiefs 44, Raiders 24
This feels like a game where the Chiefs just come out and absolutely breeze by the Raiders. They will be fired up from losing earlier this year. Plus, we all know how good Andy Reid is after a bye. I think this one will be close early, but the Chiefs will pull away in the second half and leave us no doubt that they are the top team in the AFC West.
Matt Conner: Chiefs 35, Raiders 13
I think the Raiders are tougher than normal and we can’t expect some sort of embarrassing shutout that erases all memories from Week 5, but the Chiefs will certainly flex enough muscle (and mismatches) to remind everyone in Las Vegas who reigns supreme in the AFC West.
Lyle Graversen: Chiefs 41, Raiders 20
The Chiefs may have been outplayed in the first match up, but the Chiefs are still the better team and they’ll be out to prove that Sunday. After dealing with Covid issues on defense this week the Raiders simply have no answer for Patrick Mahomes and a fired up offense.
Sterling Holmes: Chiefs 42, Raiders 24
I rarely predict blowouts but this time, I am. Revenge game or not, this is Andy Reid off of a bye and when you have this culmination of players, coaches and fans this hyped up, it is time for a classic game. I am fully expecting Mahomes to throw for 4+ touchdowns and for Andy to draw up plays we have never seen before. This is going to be fun.
Ellen Mathis: Chiefs 31, Raiders 27
This is a huge game. Everyone knows it and I think the Chiefs, coming off their bye, are particularly motivated. However, the Raiders are a young and talented team that is equally motivated. They want to show that their win earlier in the season was not a fluke and that they can be contenders in the AFC West. All things considered, however, I think this game goes to the Chiefs. I’m not sure they were “up” for the Raiders in the first matchup so I believe they play closer to this season’s Ravens game with the Raiders putting up a bigger fight than the Ravens.
Kelly Thompson: Chiefs 54, Raiders 10
If you believe any of the company line, canned responses from interviews this week as it relates the Raiders’ ill-fated circle around Arrowhead, then you and I have been watching different Chiefs teams for the last 2+ seasons. There is no chance that Chiefs players, or Andy Reid, have forgotten, and it will serve as the single biggest motivation for a regular season game that Kansas City has this season. Your favorite team makes their debut in Sin City, and leaves no doubt from Jump Street.
Farzin Vousoughian: Chiefs 45, Raiders 24
Everyone is aware the Chiefs aren’t happy with how things went down in the first meeting. Andy Reid will open up the playbook and won’t pull any punches. KC’s mentality coming into this game is a bigger deal than the X’s and O’s.