Oakland Raiders at Denver Broncos NFL Pick - Betting Odds
Oakland remained in contention for a 1st-round playoff bye with a 33-25 victory over Indianapolis on Saturday. Denver saw their playoff hopes dashed with a 33-10 defeat at the hands of Kansas City last Sunday. The Raiders won the Week 9 clash 30-20.
Oakland lost QB Derek Carr to a broken leg in the win over the Colts. In his stead QB Matt McGloin will start. He has starting experience and is well prepared. He has good receivers at his disposal but the Broncos have one of the top pass defenses in the league. Still, Denver will be hard-pressed to cover all of his targets throughout the game. One area OC Bill Musgrave will look to exploit is the weak run defense of the Broncos. They have allowed 136, 154, 180 and 238 yards rushing in their past 4 games. RB Latavius Murray is the starter but rookie RB DeAndre Washington emerged against the Colts after being buried on the depth chart. He gained 99 yards on 12 carries and scored twice. Fellow rookie RB Jalen Richard had been the backup and the speedy back will get his carries as well. Musgrave knows McCloin’s best friend on Sunday will be a strong running game.
Denver’s offense has ground to a halt and is the main reason they will miss the playoffs for the first time since 2010. The offense has produced 10, 3, 10 and 13 points over their past 4 games as QB Trevor Siemian has wilted in the second half of the season. He completed only 17-43 attempts last week and faces a defense that has improved vs. the pass with each month. Siemian wasn’t sacked last week but the Broncos have allowed 40 sacks on the year. WRs Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders have both topped 1,000 yards receiving but no other player on Denver has reached 235 yards or 30 receptions. Siemian focuses almost exclusively on his starting wideouts so look for the Raiders to double them throughout the game. RB Devontae Booker has become the outlet valve and the LBs will have to be aware of him on passing downs. The signing of RB Justin Forsett hasn’t jump-started the running game and the Broncos were held to 63 yards last week. They average 90 ypg on the ground. Oakland’s run defense is far from elite but has also improved during the season.
Public Money Consensus
In this NFL matchup between Oakland and Denver the public is definitively on the Bronco’s to win this game and covering the 1.5 point spread by over 65%. The over/under bettors are wagering this game will not go over the posted total line of 40 with over 60%.
Oakland Raiders at Denver Broncos Prediction
Denver’s locker room scuffle between the offense and defense from 2 weeks ago carried over into last week. The offense is rudderless right now and the defense is tiring from being on the field so long. The Raiders won’t want to put the game solely in McCloin’s hands so look for them to have 30+ rushing attempts in this game. Oakland still has a shot at the No.1 seed for the conference and won’t overlook the reeling Broncos. They are 7-1-1 ATS in their last 9 visits to the Mile High city and 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games away from home. Look for the Raiders’ o-line to be the star of the offense as they carve holes for 3 good RBs and protect McCloin (16 sacks allowed in ’16) so he can find wideouts Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper. I look for the visitor to get a big win this week and claim their first AFC West title since 2002.
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