The Raiders have won two games in a row and hope to deny the Buccaneers a victory in Oakland and increase their winning streak to three. However, the Buccaneers have been playing very lately, after starting 1-3, like the Raiders, they have also won two of their last three games. They have the ninth ranked offense in the NFL, led by their rookie running back, Doug Martin, and have the 15th ranked defense which hasn’t shown much balance. While they have been able to stop the run this season, the Buccaneers have the second worst pass defense in the NFL this season, a weakness that the Raiders will need to exploit.
In this past week the Buccaneers moved Carl Nicks, their star offensive guard, to the Injured Reserve, and traded their starting defensive back, Aqib Talib, to the Patriots for a fourth round pick. The Raiders will need to exploit those two holes today. With McFadden having a tough time this season, it may not be a bad idea to set up the run by passing the ball against the Bucs. Additionally, sending some blitzes up the middle against the Bucs to get after Freeman may be a good strategy, attacking the interior of their offensive line which is now filled with backups. This is a game that the Raiders can win, and after all the early struggles, a 4-4 start will be something to for this team to be proud of and to build on in the second half of the season.