The final home game for the Oakland Raiders ended in disappointment, which makes the two remaining regular-season games even more meaningful.
Derek Carr and the Oakland Raiders finished off their last home game in Oakland with a loss, much to Raiders fans’ dismay. After starting out hot in the first half against the Jaguars, the Raiders were iced in the second half by the Jaguars, who scored 17 unanswered points to win the game, 20-16.
Fans in Oakland were clearly upset at the lackluster finale topping off 45 years of Oakland Raiders history before they move to Las Vegas in 2020. This loss was met with boos, garbage tossing and a few fans breaking apart the seats at RingCentral Coliseum to take a final piece of memorabilia.
To be fair, the Raiders left a lot to be desired after the clock hit zero but that doesn’t mean all is lost. They have a couple of games left in the 2019 season that can boost morale around the organization before they head to Las Vegas. These final two games can determine the attitude that the silver and black brings to their new home, which makes it imperative to end on a high note.
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Starting in Week 16, the Raiders face the Los Angeles Chargers in a division matchup that Oakland has already won the first leg of earlier this year. In that win, the Raiders forced three turnovers and rallied in the final minutes of the game to win. Another positive for the Raiders is the Chargers are coming off of a seven-turnover game against the Minnesota Vikings, meaning the Raiders will have plenty of opportunities to create offense.
A key point heading into this game will be Carr’s performance on offense after struggling through the last four games and getting booed off the field in the Oakland finale. With this game, the Raiders have an opportunity to clear out a bad taste in mouths with a win over a division rival heading into the final game of the year.
Following their game against the Chargers, the Raiders will head to Denver to face the Broncos, another team the Raiders beat earlier in the season. The Broncos, however, have hit a stride recently with wins over the Chargers and Texans.
Although Denver might not seem like an improving team with their 5-9 record, they are much different than the team the Raiders faced at the beginning of the season. The Raiders will also have to be wary of the altitude change at Mile High as the thinner air has posed an issue for players in the past.
The key to beating the Broncos will be stopping Courtland Sutton in the aerial attack and the Denver Broncos rushing game. If the Raiders can do that, they stand a chance to steal a win on the road against another division rival.
The Oakland Raiders have an opportunity to close out their season with an 8-8 overall record, doubling their win total from 2018 and heading to Las Vegas on a relatively high note. With these two final games in Oakland, the Raiders can at least give the fans something to look forward to in 2020.