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Raiders once promising playoff outlook turns bleak following loss to Lions

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Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

The Raiders needed this one against the Lions. They desperately needed this one. At 4-5, they were clinging to playoff hopes and headed in to Detroit to face a 2-7 Lions team playing for pride. The Raiders came out with the loss and drop to 4-6 on the season, making their playoff hopes pretty dim.

The Broncos won today which pretty much rules out any chance the Raiders have of contending for the division crown. They are now at 8-2 on the season which means they would basically have to drop the rest of their season for the Raiders to have a shot. That seems unlikely.

Their best chance has long been to grab a wildcard spot. The Steelers currently lead that race at 6-4. After that, there are several teams ahead of the Raiders - the Bills (5-4), Texans (5-5), Jets (5-5), and Chiefs (5-5).

Rarely do teams make the playoffs without a winning record. What this means is the Raiders would basically have to go at least 5-1 the rest of the way, with a lot of help to have any chance at the playoffs. Their upcoming schedule includes a tough three-game stretch to begin December against the 5-5 Chiefs team that has won four-straight, the Broncos (8-2), and the Packers (7-3) who just demolished the same Vikings team that beat the Raiders last week.

Also with the Chiefs decisive 33-3 victory over the Chargers today, the Raiders drop to third in the AFC West. The Raiders' 2-game win streak following the bye seems like a season away now. And at this rate, it may be another season before it even matters.