Don’t call it a comeback! Not yet, at least. The Las Vegas Raiders are 1-3 after the first month of the season. They are coming off a necessary divisional win against the Denver Broncos.
It wasn’t pretty, but that does not matter. If they fell to 0-4, their playoff hopes would have been down the drain.
Instead, there is light at the end of the tunnel now. The Raiders will need to continue their strong play over the next few weeks in order to get back in the race for the postseason.
There is still 3/4 of a season left to play, and the Raiders do have a ton of talent.
So, you’re saying there’s a chance?
Absolutely. The numbers aren’t necessarily in their favor, but those chances have improved.
Right now, Las Vegas owns a 16% chance to make the playoffs after week 4, according to FiveThirtyEight.
Keep in mind that three teams made the playoffs last season that began 1-3. Those three teams were the Patriots, Eagles, and Steelers. There are multiple reasons to still believe that the Raiders can do what those teams did.
Las Vegas will need more consistency and balance on offense. They have to be able to run the ball like they did in week 4. Josh McDaniels has to trust his offensive line and running backs to continue that play.
QB Derek Carr has to be smart with the football, too. Turnovers can sink the Raiders quickly. They learned that the hard way early in the season.
Additionally, the Raiders’ defense has to provide more of a pass-rush outside of Maxx Crosby. Chandler Jones and co. are getting pressure at times, but they need more impact plays.
The back end of the defense has played better than expected, but acquiring another piece later in the season may become necessary.
Raiders’ fans should not give up on postseason play for their team quite yet. Keep the faith, and you may get rewarded.