Thursday, December 06, 2012, 8:20 EST NFL Network
Two AFC West teams headed in different directions take on each other this Thursday Night as the Broncos take on the Raiders in Oakland.
The Broncos head into the Oakland Coliseum fresh off clinching the AFC West title last week in a win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last week, 31-23. Denver has won seven straight games dating back to October 15th.
The main reason for their success is future Hall of Famer Peyton Manning, an offseason acquisition and former Indianapolis Colts QB. Manning is second in NFL completion percentage, passer rating and touchdown passes. Last week, Peyton went 27 for 38 with three touchdowns to dispatch Tampa Bay in a win for the division title.
Defensively, the Broncos have also been impressive. Champ Bailey has stifled opposing star wide outs all season long, and the defense is lead by linebacker Von Miller who continues to make critical plays and is only two sacks away from the franchise record in a season.
The Raiders are the polar opposite of the Broncos and have been in a free fall since late November. Oakland is in the midst of a five game skid that was extended last Sunday in a home loss against the Cleveland Browns, 20-17.
Oakland has struggled to stop opponents all season and is a bottom five defense against the run and the pass. Along with their defensive struggles, they have not been too much better on the offensive side of the ball. The Raiders have totalled just 44 points in the last three weeks of game action. They hope an active Darren McFadden can spark their offense in a Thursday Night win against Denver.
The line opened at Raiders +10.5, but has moved to +10 at mostly all books. However, some may still have +10.5 so be sure to shop around. The total opened at 50 and is now at 48.5 across the board.
As bad as the Raiders have looked this season and how the Broncos continue to roll, we simply can’t ignore another excellent spot with a double digit home underdog in a divisional game. Home dogs in spots like this have a uncommonly high success rate against the oddsmakers. The Broncos are well coached, but may lack the motivation or focus after a big win against Tampa to clinch the AFC West. They may also be looking ahead to Baltimore next week and looking past this hapless Raiders squad that still surprisingly plays well at home, despite their loss last week. The Broncos defense is also susceptible to the run, and as we mentioned above, Oakland will return Darren McFadden to the lineup this week. DMC has averaged over 144 yards rushing in his past three games against the Raiders. McFadden and gadget back Marcel Reese may be able to slow this one down and keep it close to the final minutes. We’ll take the Raiders at home.
Back The Raiders +10 at TopBet.eu