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A look at the Raiders and Bengals by advanced metrics

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NFL: Oakland Raiders at Cincinnati Bengals David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

After grabbing a key win against the Chargers on Thursday Night Football, the Raiders playoff chances went up by 16.1 percent, the third highest positive change behind the Vikings and Seahawks.

Oakland now makes the playoffs in 48.8 percent of Football Outsiders’ 30,000 weekly season simulations and has an 18.3 percent chance of hosting a playoff game at the Coliseum. The Raiders have faced the third hardest schedule to this point by DVOA, and things will start easing up as they take on the struggling Bengals on Sunday afternoon.

A steadily improving pass rush will have a major opportunity to build upon a great Thursday night outing, as they face the worst pass blocking offensive line, per ESPN’s Team Pass Block Win Rate. Cincinnati sits at a lowly 40 percent Win Rate, while Oakland’s quintet of beasts up front places second in the NFL at 65 percent.

With the Bengals operating as the NFL’s lone winless outfit, Football Outsiders has them picking first overall in 58.5 percent of simulations. Meanwhile, the Raiders chances at getting a top 5 pick this year tumbled after the Bears knocked off a Matthew Stafford-less Lions squad. As it stands, the Raiders own first rounder falls in the top 5 in 0.1 percent of simulations, while the pick the Bears owe them is top 5 just 3.3 percent of the time.

As seen below, the Bengals have been absolutely atrocious on both sides of the ball. However, they’ve laughably been No. 1 in the NFL in special teams DVOA this year, while the Raiders sit at No. 16.

DVOA Breakdown:


Overall DVOA: 6.2 percent above average, No. 12 overall

Team Offense: 17.2 percent above average, No. 5 overall

(No. 4 overall in pass offense, No. 6 overall in Rush offense)

Team Defense: 12.2 percent below average, No. 29 overall

(No. 29 overall in pass defense, No. 16 overall in rush defense)


Overall DVOA: 42.1 percent below average, No. 31 overall

Team Offense: 24.1 percent below average, No. 30 overall

(No. 29 overall in pass offense, No. 31 overall in rush offense)

Team Defense: 23.2 percent below average, No. 32 overall

(No. 32 overall in pass defense, No. 29 overall in rush defense)

DYAR Breakdown:

Despite having a solid outing last week, Derek Carr dropped from No. 4 to No. 5 in quarterback DYAR. He’s still ahead of many of his esteemed peers, like Deshaun Watson, Lamar Jackson and Tom Brady.

After an subpar showing in the first start of his career, both Ryan Finley and his predecessor Andy Dalton have posted a negative DYAR. Dalton sits at No. 30 in the NFL, while Finley would slide in just above him if he had enough qualifying snaps. Last place in quarterback DYAR? Daniel Jones. So much for all the ‘Danny Dimes’ hype.

Josh Jacobs held firm this week at No. 4 in rushing DYAR, sitting behind three of the league’s best in Christian McCaffrey, Ezekiel Elliott and Dalvin Cook. Of all 35 qualifying running backs, Cincinnati’s Joe Mixon ranks dead last in rushing DYAR.

While no Raider wideouts previously had logged enough snaps to be considered for receiving DYAR, Tyrell Williams and Hunter Renfrow have both notched enough snaps to qualify now. Williams places at No. 18 in the league, while the rookie slot receiver follows at No. 36. The receiver position has looked like a major weakness for Oakland at times this year, but the metrics suggest that the cupboard isn’t nearly as barren as it seems. Especially not with Darren Waller holding at No. 2 among tight ends in receiving DYAR once again.