It has been a tale of two halves for the Oakland Raiders (3-4) in 2013. You need look no further than last Sunday’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers to see an example.
Oakland scored 21 points in the first half and took a comfortable 18-point lead into halftime. Pittsburgh scored 15 unanswered points and the Raiders were once again on the brink of a loss. They ultimately pulled it out for the 21-18 victory.
“We got to find a way to keep on punching, keeping drives alive in the second half,” quarterback Terrelle Pryor said.
Last week Pryor set an NFL record for longest run from scrimmage by a QB, and a franchise record for longest run from scrimmage from any position player after a 93-yard jaunt for a TD in the first quarter. He leads the team in both passing (99-157, 1149 yds, 5 TDs, 7 INT) and rushing (53-391, TD).
Running back Darren McFadden has been hobbled by a hamstring injury for much of the season, but had a decent performance last week when he rushed 24 times for 73-yards and 2 touchdowns. The Raiders – who rank 5th in rushing yards per game — will need him in top shape going up against a top ten rushing defense (9th overall; 99.5 yards-per-game) in the Philadelphia Eagles (3-5).
The Eagles are coming off back-to-back losses to the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants. They have scored a grand total of 10 points combined in those losses.
Quarterback Michael Vick will be out again with a hamstring injury, but Nick Foles will be able to start.
Foles has gone 52-for-90 with 622 yards, 6 TDs, and no interceptions in 5 games, two as a starter. LeSean McCoy leads the NFL with 733 yards rushing and the Eagles rank second overall in rush yards per game with 150.4. Oakland ranks 6th in rush defense, so that will make for an interesting matchup in this game.
Date: November 3rd
Start Time: 4:05 PM ET
Location: Oakland, CA
Stadium: O.co Coliseum
On TV: FOX
Line: Oakland – 2 ½
Oakland and Philadelphia haven’t played since 2009, so there is no real recent history between the two. Both teams have superb rushing offenses and top-10 rushing defenses. On paper, it looks like a fairly even matchup. The Raiders have a bit of momentum going, and are at home, so I pick them to get back to .500 with a tight victory over the Eagles this week.
Note to fans via CSN Bay Area’s Scott Bair:
Blackout lifted. #Raiders sold out Philly game. Will be broadcast locally
— Scott Bair (@BairCSN) October 31, 2013