The big news heading into the week 13 battle with division rival, Kansas City Chiefs, is the release of Pro Bowl running back Kareem Hunt. Video footage surfaced on Friday of Hunt pushing and kicking a women in a Ohio hotel from back in February.
Hunt was initially placed on the commissioners exempt list, soon after that the Chiefs released the 2018 NFL rushing yards champ. It’s a major turn of events for a team with Super Bowl aspirations and it certainly adds some intrigue into this week’s match up.
The Raiders will take all the help they can get. The Chiefs rank first in total offense and have the leagues highest scoring offense at 36.7 points a game. The Chiefs will also be without deep threat receiver Sammy Watkins, who is out with an injury. The Chiefs still have plenty of weapons available for MVP candidate quarterback Patrick Mahomes, including Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelece.
The disparity has the Chiefs heavily favored. By 15.5 points to be exact.
At this point in the Raiders season there is not much left to play for, they would love nothing else but to play spoiler and ruin the Chiefs chances at securing home field advantage during the playoffs.
Now let’s see what coaches from both teams are saying heading into the week 13 match up.
Head Coach Jon Gruden, on the Chiefs defense.
“I look at the Chiefs on defense, I have a lot of respect for them. They’re going to be a handful. They’ve given up some defensive touchdowns. Dee Ford is a problem. Justin Houston is a real problem. Chris Jones is a problem for us. Bob Sutton, the Chiefs defensive coordinator, I know what he’s capable of doing. They’re coming off a Bye Week. They’ll be healthy, they’ll be happy and they’ll be ready to roll. We’re going to have our hands full.”
Jon Gruden, on playing the role of spoiler.
“We feel like we played a pretty good football game last week against the Ravens. We really did. We were down by three points to start that fourth quarter on the road against a team who I think is capable of winning the North. We’re just concentrating on getting better. We know what the point spread is. We know what we’re up against. We’re anxious to compete, that’s all I can say.”
Defensive Coordinator Paul Guenther, on defending a explosive player like Tyreek Hill.
“They do a lot of things with him. Reverses, jet sweeps, they move him around in the formations and he lines up at all three spots. It’s not like they do just one thing with him. He lines up at the X, he lines up at the slot, or whatever it may be. They will move him around. Obviously, they got some of the other guys in there, Sammy Watkins and Travis Kelce and those guys, and the back is a good player. The games I’ve seen, he has broken a lot of tackles. We got to do a good job of tackling the catch and tackling the run in the open field.”
Head Coach Andy Reid, on Derek Carr.
“I had him in the Pro Bowl, you remember that. I got to know him a little bit. He’s getting the ball out. He’s got a good tight end there which is a quarterback’s best friend always. He’s using him and that running back, who’s a quarterback’s second best friend. Those become important elements to the stats that you’re throwing around. To the question you asked there, I don’t think he’s more conservative. No, I don’t think that. I think he’s just dealing it up to the guys that are there.”