NFL Betting: Shade The Under As Raiders Flag Hasn't Flown In The Playoffs For A While

Oakland Raiders

Nikki Adams

Tuesday, August 2, 2016 5:32 PM GMT

Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2016 5:32 PM GMT

Oakland are a team on the rise and accordingly bookmakers hang the Raiders on 8.5 wins in 2016. Can the Raiders shatter this lofty ceiling? We weigh in on their schedule and serve up NFL picks.

Oakland Raiders 2015 Look Back
The Oakland Raiders were tipped to be better with Derek Carr in 2015 as many NFL experts predicted they would go at least 6-10 SU. They went one better to finish 7-9 SU, which included a healthy 3-3 record in the formidable AFC West and a modest 4-4 record on the road.

Punching above your perceived weight class brings with it higher expectations, as underlined by 2016 NFL betting markets where the Raiders are hanging on an 8.5 projected season win total, and, importantly, expected to crack it. The OVER is fancied at -125 with Bet365 and at a slightly higher -130 with Bodog while the UNDER is priced at -105 and EVEN money, respectively, with the aforementioned sportsbooks.

Undoubtedly, this is a team on the rise with lots of upsides. However, the question is whether they can replicate 2015 or, even better, build on it meaningfully and go above .500 for the first time in what must seem like forever for Raiders’ fans. (The last time the Raiders hit .500 was 2011, after pulling it off the feat in 2010 as well. Their last winning season was way back in 2002!)

It’s one thing to defy expectations, another to live up to expectations. It brings a different kind of pressure to the Raiders, something they’ve not experienced at all. And we are yet to see how they hold up under such circumstances. Still, given the sum total of their parts, it’s doable.

On that note, we breakdown the NFL schedule and serve up game-by-game previews and predictions before rounding out with our choice NFL pick for the projected season win totals.


Week 1 vs. New Orleans (away), Sunday, September 11
Opening the season at the Superdome is going to be a thrilling exercise. Right off the bat, we’ll see what these Raiders are truly made of.  Considering it’s ten years since Hurricane Katrina and the devastation that befell New Orleans, Drew Brees, and the Saints will be up for this clash at the Superdome, eager to serve up a home win. It might be too tough in the end for a Raiders win. The defense is sure to give Drew Brees a run for his money, but the veteran quarterback can find ways to light up his O-line.

NFL Picks: Loss
Record 0-1

 

Week 2 vs. Atlanta, Sunday, September 18
Matt Ryan and the Falcons offense have a fighting chance in any game, but the defense left a lot to be desired in 2015 – they were found propping up many key categories. Today’s Raiders have a legitimate chance to win this matchup at the Coliseum.

NFL Picks: Win
Record 1-1

 

Week 3 vs. Tennessee (away), Sunday, September 25
The Titans are in the fledgling stages of redevelopment and reorganization. Marcus Mariota is a huge talent, but the Raiders are that much further ahead.

NFL Picks: Win
Record 2-1

 

Week 4 vs. Baltimore (away), Sunday, October 2
The Ravens struggled mightily last season, including a shocking 37-33 loss in week 2 at the Coliseum. This time, the Ravens have the Raiders on their turf at the M&T in week 4. The Ravens shouldn’t be as bad as they were last season. Confidence may be with the Raiders following last season’s win, but John Harbaugh and Company will want to set the record straight.

NFL Picks: Loss
Record 2-2

 

Week 5 vs. San Diego, Sunday, October 9
Speaking of confidence being with the Raiders, it should be in abundance here. They swept the Chargers last season winning 37-29 in San Diego and 23-20 in overtime at home. The Chargers don’t look to factor in the AFC West this season again, so the Raiders should feel this is another winnable game, potentially the beginning of the sweep.

NFL Picks: Win
Record 3-2

 

Week 6 vs. Kansas City, Sunday, October 16
The Kansas City Chiefs are the first playoff team the Raiders come face to face within 2016, not to mention fierce divisional rivals. Andy Reid and Company stack up well on both sides of the ball, but their defense is sure to get at Raiders’ young O-line with impunity. This could be a tough day for Derek Carr and the Raiders.

NFL Picks: Loss
Record 3-3

 

Week 7 vs. Jacksonville (away), Sunday, October 23
Inasmuch as the Raiders are an improved side, to too are the Jaguars. The Raiders took bigger steps in 2015 than the Jaguars, who finished 5-11 SU. However, that can’t be taken for granted. The Jags have home advantage and the steps they made to improve in the offseason will be showcased in a matchup that should be more even than most would have it based on the last term.

NFL Picks: Loss
Record 3-4

 

Week 8 vs. Tampa Bay (away), Sunday, October 30
Tampa Bay Buccaneers are a growing talent but they enter 2016 with a new coach and wholesale changes. Raiders should fancy a road win here at the expense of second-year quarterback Jameis Winston and the Bucs.

NFL Picks: Win
Record 4-4

 

Week 9 vs. Denver, Sunday, November 6
After losing to Denver 16-10 in week 5 at the Coliseum, the Raiders served up the upset at Mile High and won 15-12. It’s worth mentioning, they were facing Brock Osweiler at the time. It remains to be seen which quarterback leads the Broncos into the season – looks to be Mark Sanchez at the time of writing. One reckons the Raiders just might fancy their chances against the Broncos, even with their vaulted defense. This game is more of a tossup than it ever was in season’s past.

NFL Picks: Win
Record 5-4

 

Week 10 vs. BYE

 

Week 11 vs. Houston, Monday, November 21
Speaking of Brock Osweiler, the Raiders welcome the Denver cast-off in week 11 in…wait for it… Mexico City and following a bye week. The Texans defense is nothing to sniff at and will give Derek Carr and his O-line headaches, particularly if Deacon Jones Winner J.J. Watt if fully fit and healthy. It’s technically an away game for both – although the Raiders are sacrificing a home game for it. Oh, and it’s Monday Night Football too with the national gaze trained solely on this game. No pressure then.

NFL Picks: Loss
Record 5-5

 

Week 12 vs. Carolina, Sunday, November 27
A short week, a trek  from Mexico City to Oakland for a date with the Carolina Panthers. Oh dear. That’s a tough ask.

NFL Picks: Loss
Record 5-6

 

Week 13 vs. Buffalo, Sunday, December 4
The Buffalo Bills descend on the Coliseum in week 13 NFL betting, a cross country trek that follows a home date with the Jaguars. Not the worst situation to be in all things being considered, but do we trust in Tyrod Taylor and the Bills?  They were just 3-5 on the road last season.

NFL Picks: Win
Record 6-6

 

Week 14 vs. Kansas City (away), Thursday, December 8
The Chiefs swept aside the Raiders 34-20 in Oakland and 23-17 at Arrowhead, the latter of which was in week 17 and marked the tenth straight win in the regular season by the Chiefs. Arrowhead is a tough place to play and while the Raiders D-line can give Alex Smith and his offense something to think about, one reckons it’s the Raiders’ O-line that will find it even more challenging to shred the Chiefs’ D-line.

NFL Picks: Loss
Record 6-7

 

Week 15 vs. San Diego (away), Sunday, December 18
The Raiders fly into San Diego on their brooms, preparing to sweep, sweep, sweep the Chargers.

NFL Picks: Win
Record 7-7

 

Week 16 vs. Indianapolis, Saturday, December 24
Last year, the Colts were a popular Super Bowl pick amongst NFL bettors. That proved to be rather premature as they crashed down to earth and missed the playoffs entirely. Andrew Luck is a solid quarterback but there are those that would have him overrated, especially now with his $72 million dollar contract that isn’t at all proportional to his accomplishments. More importantly, splashing the cash on Luck has held back the Colts somewhat in addressing the many holes on their roster. The Raiders can show up the Colts here, mark these words.

NFL Picks: Win
Record 8-7

 

Week 17 vs. Denver (away), Sunday, January 1
If all goes to plan, this could be a pivotal game in Raiders history – the difference between finishing with a .500 and winning record. They did upset the Broncos at Mile High the last term, but that was early in the year. Week 17 the freezing temperatures and high altitude are sure to wreak havoc.

NFL Picks: Loss
Record 8-8

 

NFL Projected Season Win Totals for the Raiders: By and large, NFL experts and insiders are predicting a winning season for the Raiders that would see them crack the 8.5 projected season win total. A feat that falls in line with the way the market and NFL odds stack up.

We’re more of the cooler-heads-approach with our leaning, choosing to go for a more conservative (yet respectable) 8-8 SU record. Admittedly, that has us going UNDER market expectations with our NFL picks and banking on the UNDER 8.5 at the best price of EVEN money available with Bodog.

Look, we definitely agree this is a team with lots of upside and potential. However, old habits die hard. The Raiders flag hasn’t flown in the playoffs in 13 seasons – it’s the second-longest playoff drought in the NFL after the Bills (16 seasons, yikes) and, say what you will, but the AFC West still ranks amongst the toughest divisions in the NFL.

 

NFL Picks: Under 8.5 at +100 at Bodog

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