LOUIS Ross (@LouisRoss67) is on hand to preview the latest edition of Thursday night NFL.
Oakland Raiders @ Kansas City Chiefs | Friday 01:25 | Sky Sports 1
Thursday Night Football can be a tough watch sometimes. The games scheduled are rarely of high quality. Often along the lines of a Browns -Titans matchup. The slot is the least popular in the NFL season but thankfully tonight, what in September would have looked another poor offering has turned into one of the most anticipated games of the season.
Oakland and Kansas are in full battle mode for the divisional title and perhaps wildcard spot in the playoffs. Both the Raiders and Chiefs come into this game in fine form. Oakland led by Derek Carr are having their best season in decades. That is due in large part to the defensive play of Aaron Donald and the monster that is Khalil Mack.
Mack is a candidate for both defensive MVP and the overall MVP award itself. His play has been astonishing at times. Carr has led his offence to some famous wins and despite issues with the stadium that could see the franchise moving to Las Vegas, everything seems rosy in the Oakland garden. Kansas has once more picked up after a very slow start and could still win out and take an incredibly tight division.
The Chiefs defence has even more star performers than the Raiders unit. Justin Houston has been unplayable since his return from injury. Dee Ford and Tamba Hali are injury doubts for this game though and it is this area of the field that may present the best betting opportunity.
Oakland has possibly the best offensive line in football (along with Dallas before you all start trolling me!) and whilst the Chiefs defence creates a lot of turnovers and scores , in reality they also give up a lot of yards and points.
Maybe you will be surprised to know that the Kansas D ranks a lowly 29th overall or just 27th against the run? Shocking numbers really. They score almost 50% of their teams points, but apart from that can be got at. I like Oakland to win this game. I like most teams to beat Alex Smith, but I really like Latavius Murray to have another huge day.
Murray missed the last game between these two but has 114 and 82 yard games in recent weeks against Buffalo and Denver. This game should see Murray get plenty of the ball.
Carr is still recovering from a dislocated finger on his throwing hand and Kansas defends the pass far better than the run. Keeping the ball on the ground should mean keeping the Chiefs defence on the field. Time of possession could be the key to winning this game and I think one oddsmaker in particular has got this line very wrong.
Oakland Raiders @ Kansas City Chiefs – Latavius Murray Over 58.5 Rushing Yards (5/6 Paddy Power)