Raiders Season Preview – Las Vegas Chronicle Staff

Source: Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports

Game circled on the calendar:

Jake Brockhoff: Week 14 – Raiders at Chiefs. The Raiders won in Arrowhead last year, and I’m curious to see if they can repeat that in 2021. This game will also be down the stretch of the season in the middle of the playoff race, so it should be a good one.

Rooz Hariri: Week 10 – Raiders vs. Chiefs (SNF). Rematch from last year’s Sunday Night thriller. This time Moehrig makes the play that Abram couldn’t to seal the victory.

Raina Rutschka: Week 13 – Raiders vs. Washington Football Team. I can’t wait to see how the revamped offensive line holds up against Washington’s defensive line.

Elijah Southwick: Week 12 – Raiders at Cowboys (Thanksgiving). I have the Raiders at 5-5 going into this matchup, and I’m high on the Cowboys this season. This game could be the difference between the Raiders pushing for the playoffs or playing catch up for a wild card spot.

Sanjit T: Week 1 – Raiders vs. Ravens (MNF) This will be a test for the Raiders. Are the Raiders contenders or pretenders? A lot of questions will be answered. AND Week 18 – Raiders vs. Chargers. This game will likely be the difference between the playoffs. The Raiders have to show up, and Gus Bradley will have to figure out a way to contain Justin Herbert.

Elias Trejo: Week 15 – Raiders at Browns. Two teams fighting for a playoff spot late in the season. Can the Raiders win on the road with an early start in cold weather?

Jason Willis: Week 2 – Raiders vs. Steelers. The first real test for Gus Bradley’s defense as Lamar Jackson poses a different kind of threat than most other quarterbacks. Raiders will fly across the country for a 1 PM start against a good team.

Favorite Player:

Jake Brockhoff: Josh Jacobs

Rooz Hariri: Darren Waller

Raina Rutschka: Alec Ingold

Elijah Southwick: Trayvon Mullen

Sanjit T: Kolton Miller, Andre James, Lester Cotton, Jimmy Morrissey

Elias Trejo: Josh Jacobs

Jason Willis: Darren Waller

Breakout Player:

Jake Brockhoff: Nate Hobbs

Rooz Hariri: John Simpson

Raina Rutschka: Zay Jones

Elijah Southwick: Alex Leatherwood

Sanjit T: Johnathan Abram

Elias Trejo: Henry Ruggs III

Jason Willis: Henry Ruggs III

Why Raider Nation should be optimistic in 2021:

Jake Brockhoff: Raiders fans should be excited about their new defense. The additions of players like Yannick Ngakoue and Casey Hayward should make an impact, as well as new defensive coordinator Gus Bradley. With exciting young players like Nate Hobbs and Tre’von Moehrig, this unit could be much better than the one we saw last year.

Rooz Hariri: After four offseasons stripping down the roster and shaping it in his vision, head coach Jon Gruden now has all of the pieces he needs to make a legitimate playoff run. A new stadium with fully sold-out crowds, new defensive coordinator, improved team speed on defense, and weapons at every position on offense. Just Win Baby!

Raina Rutschka: Raider Nation has a lot to be excited about this season. With the addition of Gus Bradley and the new defensive scheme, the defense is poised to excel compared to last season. The players have a spark and passion for football that is so clear going into the regular season.

Elijah Southwick: Although I’m not personally buying the Bryan Edwards comparisons to Terrell Owens and Davante Adams, an emergence looks likely from both Edwards and Ruggs III. Derek Carr had a sneaky good season in 2020, and the passing offense could be dynamic in 2021.

Sanjit T: The Raiders will be much better in 2021 compared to 2019 and 2020, simply because of the new defensive coordinator and the depth the Raiders made sure they have this year. One thing that’s clear is the Raiders defense runs to the football and knows how to fill their run fits.

Elias Trejo: Raider Nation has a lot to be excited about. The Raiders have invested a lot in the draft over the last three years and this is the year when we should start seeing the return on their investments. Say what you will, but the draft class of 2019 was the turning point for this franchise. It’s time for them to lead the way.

Jason Willis: The biggest reason for optimism is Gus Bradley. Truthfully, the defense could not be much worse so even being league average will be a huge plus for Las Vegas. They play an extremely difficult schedule so if the defense doesn’t improve, it could be a long year.

Final Record Predictions:

Jake Brockhoff: 10-7

Rooz Hariri: 10-7

Raina Rutschka: 10-7

Elijah Southwick: 8-9

Sanjit T: 11-6

Elias Trejo: 12-5

Jason Willis: 8-9

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