The Denver Broncos and the Las Vegas Raiders both have playoff hopes and both find themselves looking for a big win against a divisional rival and fellow wild card contender this weekend. The Raiders enter the game as a five-point home favorite against the Broncos with the game total set at 52.5 on SportsBetting.com.
Denver Broncos at Las Vegas Raiders
Date: Sunday, Nov. 15 – 4:05 PM ET
Odds: Raiders -5
After an 0-3 start, the Broncos won three of their next four games to get right back in contention for a wild card playoff spot. But after Sunday’s 34-27 loss to Atlanta, Denver needs a win in a game against a fellow wild card contender to get back on track.
The strength of this Broncos team this season has been its defense. Though statistically, Denver has been no better than average in total and scoring defense this season, the Broncos have been clutch in key moments with the league’s second-best red-zone touchdown percentage and the No. 5 opponents’ third-down percentage in the NFL. Opponents get yardage, bet Denver has stopped them when it matters.
On offense, Denver got off to a slow start this season, scoring fewer than 20 points in four of its first six games this season, but the Broncos seem to be clicking in recent weeks. The Broncos have averaged 29 points and 378 total yards over its last two games, led by quarterback Drew Lock who has thrown for 545 yards and five touchdowns over that span. Denver’s offense may not be as consistent and reliable as the defense, but it’s proven to be potent in a number of games this season.
Las Vegas Raiders
With a 5-3 record, Las Vegas comfortably in the wild card race at the midpoint in the season but need to continue their winning ways to keep pace.
The Raiders’ strength this season has been their offense, scoring more than 30 points in four of their first eight games this season and scoring 40 points against the defending Super Bowl champion Chiefs. But as good as it’s been at times, inconsistency has been Las Vegas’ downfall as in each of the Raiders’ three losses, they’ve managed no more than two touchdowns.
Meanwhile, the Las Vegas defense has been consistent, but not very good. The Raiders have allowed more than 30 points in half of their games this season, including 45 points against the Buccaneers, and rank last in the AFC West in both scoring and total defense.
If the offense is clicking, the Raiders have proven they can compete with anyone in the league. But inconsistency coupled with a shaky defense could spell problems for Las Vegas moving forward.
This is a strength-on-strength matchup between the high-powered Raiders offense and a bend-but-don’t-break Bronco defense, but Denver has the edge due to its consistency. The Bronco defense will make stops matters to keep the game close and the Denver offense is more than capable of scoring against a lackluster Las Vegas defense.
Pick: Denver +5