The short week heading into last Thursday’s game meant either the Raiders would have an extended period to celebrate or extra time to recover. It turned out to be the latter, with the Raiders suffering their toughest loss of the season to the Chiefs.
But that’s over now. Time to pick up the pieces and move onto the next one.
“We’re not going to lay around and bathe in the adulation of a win. ‘Look how good this is,” Del Rio told his players. “We’re also not going to sit and wallow in misery when we lose. We’re going to be matter of fact. We’re going to learn the lessons – and there are lessons to be learned in every ballgame, win or lose. And we’re going to learn the lessons, gain that experience and then go forward and begin our preparation for next.”
With such a crucial game, one in which a win would have clinched a playoff spot and put some distance atop the AFC West, it can be easy to lose sight of the fact that the Raiders are still in pretty good position.
They are still 10-3 and in line for a playoff spot. They have the same record as the Chiefs. Even though the sweep gives the Chiefs the tiebreaker, they can’t slip up or the Raiders could take that spot back quickly.
The rest of their playoff push will begin in San Diego this week. The Chargers fell to 5-8 on the season coming off a bad loss to the Panthers. San Diego is also Raiders’ home away from home where there are typically as much, if not more, Silver & Black in the crowd as there is bolts. Not to mention, the nice weather will be welcomed after the cold night in Kansas City.
Even at 5-8, the Chargers are dangerous and must be respected. Though I wouldn’t expect this Raiders team to be overconfident after the display they put up in Kansas City. That could work in their favor. Not to mention learning not to outsmart themselves and take what the defense is giving them.