The last time the Raiders were in the playoff hunt at the end of the season was 2011. That season the Raiders final game was against the Chargers and the Chargers spoiled their hopes for their first trip to the playoffs or winning team in a decade. Now, the Raiders could have a chance to return the favor.
The Chargers currently sit at 7-7 on the season. A loss to the Raiders could mean their playoff hopes are crushed. Along with a loss to the Raiders, if the Ravens or Dolphins win, the Chargers would be out.
Though it seems unlikely considering the Chargers have won three of their last four games including huge wins over division rival Broncos and Chiefs. This is not the same team the Raiders beat in week six. Or more accurately, this is not the same Raiders team.
It is mostly the actual same players but opposing offenses have had their way with the Raiders of late and Phillip Rivers is having a Pro Bowl caliber season. He said he was confused by the Raiders defense last time they played. No one is confused by them these days.
Playing spoiler is about all there is to look forward to for this Raiders team now. They sit at 4-10 and were officially eliminated from playoff contention last week. They are closer to being in contention for a second straight top three draft pick.
While a loss would keep the Raiders in line for that top three pick, make no mistake, no one on this team is thinking draft. There are quite a few players whose contracts are up after this season as well as a coaching staff eager to finish at least one game ahead of last year's total (4-12). No win would be sweeter than one in San Diego this weekend.