The Raiders haven’t won in Chicago since I was a kid. Still, they will take on a Bears team that has seen better days.
Chicago will be without their top quarterback and two top running backs. The Bears are 1-5 including losses to the lowly Vikings and Broncos.
Bears edge Yannick Ngakoue is the Bears most formidable pass rusher. He also has beef with the Raiders since they traded him and signed Chandler Jones. Ngakoue was hurt last year when the Raiders faced him and the Colts. Expect him to try and get a sack.
Andrew Billings is another former Raiders defensive lineman who will be looking to eat up some blocks. Justin Jones and DeMarcus Walker are also some AFC West who know the Raiders well.
Otherwise, much of the Raiders talk has been about the receivers. Hunter Renfrow is reportedly on the block. Davante Adams has been unhappy with his role. This is the game where the Raiders need to spread the ball around and get everyone involved. Vegas needs to get the ball out to their playmakers early and often.
Josh Jacobs is also looking for his first 100 yard rushing game of the season. Jacobs can help the Raiders control the clock. That will be extra important with Brian Hoyer expected to make the start for the Raiders. Hoyer needs great play from his offensive line, running back and receivers.
Jacobs and rookie tight end Michael Meyer will have a challenge with Tremaine Edmunds roaming the middle of the field. His combination of size and speed could take away some of the middle of the field.
Ultimately, Vegas should come out with their third consecutive win. They will take on rookie Tyson Bagent. Bagent went to Shepherd but he can throw the ball around. Still, there should be some turnover opportunities for the Raiders. Marcus Peters is still looking for his first pick in Silver and Black. Trevon Moehrig has two interceptions this year, which is more than his entire careee. Let’s see if he can get another one.
The Raiders should also get opportunities to rush the passer. Chicago is starting a rookie right tackle and down their starting right guard. Max Crosby should eat today. The defensive line should run some stunts to confuse the young signal caller, back and line.
If Vegas can control the line of scrimmage with their run game and get the ball to their playmakers, there is no reason why they shouldn’t control this game. That should setup the defense to play extra aggressive versus a rookie quarterback trying to play catch-up. The Raiders once again need to look to run the ball first, push the ball down the field and make plays on defense. They will be without their starting QB but they do not need to get cute to pull out this victory in Chicago.
The Raiders didn’t look great versus the Patriots and they had their starting QB at least at the beginning of the game. They made just enough plays on the defensive line and with Moehrig’s interception. However, they were really close to losing that game and almost gave Zeke his biggest play of the season.
Moreover, the Raiders stuck with the running game by giving Jacobs 25 carries. Yet, he barely averaged 3 yards a carry. Either way, it’s always great to beat New England.
This week the Raiders offensive line needs to create more of a surge for the running back this week. It will also help if Jacobs can bust a big run.
Ultimately, the Raiders need to beat Chicago before they take on the Detroit Lions next week. Detroit has a great offense, an explosive runner and elite pass rusher. That’s enough to give the Raiders problems, especially if their quarterback is still out next week.
Regardless, the Raiders need to tune up versus the Bears. Don’t overlook Chicago. They need to win this game and look good doing it. That will give them great confidence a record above .500 headed into Detroit.