Take the Raiders As Your NFL Pick In Possible Last Game In Oakland

LT Profits Sports Group

Thursday, December 24, 2015 2:55 PM UTC

Thursday, Dec. 24, 2015 2:55 PM UTC

You can call it the “Los Angeles Bowl” on Christmas Eve night and the Raiders could have the emotional edge over the Chargers in a matchup of two teams rumored to be moving to LA.


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NFL Pick: Raiders -5.5

Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle


Being on the opposite ends of the emotional spectrum could key a fairly handy win for the home team on NFL Thursday Night Football when the San Diego Chargers (4-10, 6-8 ATS) pay a visit to those Oakland Raiders (6-8, 7-7 ATS) in perhaps the final game from O.co Coliseum in Oakland, CA at 8:25 ET in a game televised nationally on NFL Network.

The point spread at Heritage has Oakland as a home favorite for this contest with the current line at -5½ with NFL odds of -105.


Raiders Heading in Right Direction
The Raiders have made positive strides this season at 6-8, thanks to a nice young nucleus on offense in quarterback Derek Carr, wide receiver Amari Cooper and running back Latavius Murray. Now, they are finally facing a team that they are probably better than for the first time in the while, and that could be part of the reason why Oakland has been bet up from an opener of -4½, currently sitting at -6 at many spots other than the -5½ at Heritage.

On the flip side, the Chargers have taken a decided step back as NFL picks this year sitting at 4-10 right now, with only the 3-11 Tennessee Titans and Cleveland Browns having worse records in the NFL. San Diego does come off of a 30-14 destruction of the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, but that puts the Chargers in a terrible emotional spot here.


Short Rest Following Emotional Win
You see, both of these teams have been rumored to be moving to Los Angeles next season, so Sunday may very well have been the Chargers’ last game ever in San Diego. Thus the team came out with enormous emotion while building a 23-0 halftime lead before coasting home to the victory, although it must be said that facing a dead Dolphins’ team also helped San Diego’s cause.

Nonetheless, the emotion shown by the Chargers was obvious and they performed a bit over their heads while out-gaining Miami in total yardage 442-231, with Danny Woodhead having a career day with four touchdowns. Now the Chargers end their era in San Diego (potentially) with two road games, and with this one coming just four days after leaving everything on the field Sunday, we simply see no way for this team to come close to matching that intensity.

And an uninspired Chargers’ team is the worst Chargers’ team in a long time this season as the 3-10 record before Sunday was not a fluke, as this is a team that can neither run the football (dead last in rushing offense at 84.0 yards per game) nor stop the run (24th in rushing defense allowing 120.6 yards per game). This is a team that usually gets manhandled on both lines and we expect a return to that normal form here on Christmas Eve night.


Now, Shoe is on Other Foot
In fact, this is the exact opposite situation that the Chargers were just in on Sunday as now is their opponents that can be expected to play with that kind of emotion with this possibly being the last game for the Raiders in Oakland! Some important differences however are that this game is on national television and the Raiders look to have the better team on paper, two factors that combined with the emption of the night point to a decisive Oakland victory.

Some may be quick to point out that the Raiders have lost three straight home games since beating the Jets here back on November 1st, but those three losses all came to teams currently in the playoffs in the Vikings, Chiefs and Packers, and oh by the way the Jets’ team that Oakland beat here is currently in the playoffs too. Besides, the Raiders have a very impressive 15-12 road win at Denver two weeks ago before the competitive 30-20 loss to the Packers Sunday.

San Diego represents a definite drop in class from the teams that Oakland has been facing, making the Chargers perfect patsies for the Raiders to beat up on in what could very possibly be the last football game in this stadium.


Raiders Have Done Well Head-to-Head ATS
Finally, the Raiders have actually dominated this head-to-head series from a betting standpoint going 5-1 ATS in the last six meetings, including an easy 37-29 win at San Diego earlier this season that was not as close as the final score, as Oakland led 37-6 before the Chargers scored three cosmetic touchdowns on the fourth quarter with the final one coming with just six seconds remaining.

Look for that ATS success by the Raiders in this series to continue in what should be an emotional night in front of a national NFL Network audience when San Diego comes to town for perhaps the final game in Oakland on Christmas Eve Thursday.

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