Las Vegas Raiders (6-6, 5-7 ATS) at Kansas City Chiefs (8-4, 5-7), 1 p.m.
Brolley’s Raiders Stats and Trends
These teams have played over the total in three straight games in this series over the last two seasons.
Las Vegas is 5-1 ATS in its last six games as a road underdog.
The Raiders are 1-4 ATS in their last five games, and they’ve scored 16 or fewer points in each of those losses.
Las Vegas is 4-1 toward overs in his last five games as an underdog.
Josh Jacobs is the last man standing in this backfield with Kenyan Drake (ankle, IR) and Jalen Richard (COVID) out this week — Peyton Barber will likely be the second RB. Jacobs posted season-highs in snaps share (85%), targets (9), and catches (9) on his way to 22/90/1 scrimmage against Washington. He’s now scored 19+ FP in consecutive games after failing to top 17 FP in the first 11 weeks of the season. Jacobs struggled mightily in this matchup in Week 10, posting 7/16 rushing and 5/20 receiving while Drake had 6/31 scrimmage.
Derek Carr has thrown for multiple TDs just once in five games since Las Vegas’ bye, and he’s finished with fewer than 14 FP in three of those contests. Carr averaged 6.6 YPA and he failed to throw a TD pass last week against Washington with Darren Waller (knee) out of the lineup. Carr completed 25/35 passes for 261 yards (7.5 YPA), two TDs, and one INT in this matchup earlier this season.
Hunter Renfrow is the entire Raiders’ passing game the last two weeks with Waller out of the lineup. He recorded his two best games of the season in Weeks 12-13 with a combined 17/236 receiving on 19 targets for 40.8 FP against Dallas and Washington. Renfrow finished with 7/46/1 receiving on nine targets against the Chiefs in Week 10.
Foster Moreau flopped in his second start for Darren Waller (knee) this season, catching just one of his three targets for 34 yards. Waller has a chance to return this week, and he managed just 4/24 receiving on seven targets when these teams met in mid-November.
Brolley’s Chiefs Stats and Trends
The Chiefs beat the Raiders 41-14 in Week 10 as 2.5-point road favorites in a game totaled at 53.5 points.
The Chiefs have now had at least one five-game winning streak in each of Andy Reid’s nine seasons with the franchise.
Kansas City has five straight outright victories and three consecutive covers.
The Chiefs are 6-1 toward unders in their last seven games.
Patrick Mahomes has one game with more than 15 FP since Week 6 and it happened to come against the Raiders and their Cover 3 defense. He finished as the QB1 in Week 10 against the Raiders by completing 35/50 passes for 406 yards (8.1 YPA) and five TDs. He’s thrown for just two touchdowns and in his other five games in Weeks 7-13, and he hasn’t averaged more than 7.0 YPA in each of those five contests.
Tyreek Hill is coming off his worst fantasy showing of the season with just 2/22 receiving on five targets for 4.2 FP, and he didn’t help matters with two bad drops. He had posted 20+ FP in three of his last four games even with Mahomes struggling since Week 6. Hill posted 7/83/2 receiving on 10 targets when these teams met in mid-October.
Byron Pringle has been running as the #2 WR in recent weeks. He’s coming off a miserable game last week with just a 14-yard catch on four targets with two ugly drops. Pringle had 4/46/1 receiving on five targets in this matchup a couple of weeks ago.
Travis Kelce also got taken under by Mahomes’ awful game, matching his season-low with 5.7 FP on 3/27 receiving on eight targets. He did have a three-game run with 17+ FP before their Week 12 bye, but he’s scored just one TD in his last seven games after scoring four times in his first five contests. Kelce finished with 8/119 receiving on 10 targets in this matchup in Week 10.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire has been right around 50% of the snaps in each of his first two games since returning to the lineup off of his knee injury. He’s scored 11+ FP in each of those contests with a combined 26/117/1 rushing and 5/41 receiving. Darrel Williams is still hanging around for the other 40% of those snaps, stealing five carries in each game and he actually led the Chiefs with 3/60 receiving last week. CEH missed their Week 10 showdown with his injury, and he watched as Darrel posted 11/43 rushing and 9/101/1 receiving against Las Vegas.
Barfield’s Pace and Tendencies
Pace (seconds in between plays): 28.1 (18th)
Plays per game: 59.0 (29th)
Pass: 64.0% (10th) | Run: 36.0% (23rd)
Pace: 26.6 (6th)
Plays per game: 68.9 (2nd)
Pass: 66.3% (3rd) | Run: 33.7% (30th)
All pace / play data is from the last eight weeks.
While the Chiefs are structurally the same team as they’ve been over the last three years – fast, high volume, and pass-heavy – their offense has been stuck in neutral. Over the last eight weeks, Kansas City has scored a TD on just 20% of their possessions (20th). There are some systemic problems with this attack right now, but the Raiders obviously served as the Chiefs lone game where they rediscovered their 2018-20 form back in Week 10. Las Vegas has allowed 27.4 points per game over the last eight weeks which gives this Chiefs offense a ceiling even if it’s just for one week.
The Raiders are huge dogs here and if their defense does give up points early and often, we’ll see an extremely pass-heavy plan. Vegas has gone 71.5% pass-heavy when trailing over the last eight weeks, which is tied with Tampa for the sixth-highest rate. They’ve dropped four of their last 5 since their bye, which has led to plenty of volume for the passing attack as Derek Carr is averaging 37 attempts per game in this stretch.
Huber’s Key Matchup Notes
During his Week 10 matchup with the Raiders, Tyreek Hill submitted a 7/83/2 line on 10 targets for 27.5/24.0 FPs. It’s a far cry from the 2/22/0 line he generated on five targets for 4.2/3.2 FPs last week against Denver. I took the opportunity to refresh my brain on Hill’s matchup with Las Vegas. One variable quickly stood out: OC Eric Bieniemy insisted on shifting Hill all over the formation in order to create specific matchups. One of the downsides of using a single coverage at such a high rate is opposing offenses tracking defensive alignments. And Bieniemy took advantage of just that to pitt Hill across from Johnathan Abram (2/11/2), a disgusting pwnage of Desmond Trufant in the red zone (1/8/1), and, specifically, putting Brandon Facyson out to dry as much as possible (2/48/0). Raiders’ DC Gus Bradley tried everything in his toolkit to keep Hill in the vicinity of Casey Hayward Jr. It didn’t work. Hayward just couldn’t station himself in more than one place at a time. Patrick Mahomes II connected for 406 passing yards and five TDs.
I want to get behind Derek Carr, but QB defense is precisely where this Kansas City defense has excelled. With his PPR potential, Hunter Renfrow doesn’t need an end zone trip to make a difference. That’s far from the case for Carr. We need around two TD tosses from Carr to justify exposure. Not a crazy expectation, just not one I am going to invest my hard-earned money toward.
Dolan’s Vantage Points
It’s been mostly bad news for Patrick Mahomes of late.
Here’s Graham from Stat-Pack on just how bad things have gotten for the erstwhile MVP:
Over his last six games, Patrick Mahomes is averaging 249.6 YPG, has a 7:4 TD-to-INT ratio, a 81.5 passer rating, and averaged 6.3 YPA.
It’s a marked difference after his first six games where Mahomes shined (314.5 YPG, 18:8 TD-to-INT ratio, 103.1 rating, 7.8 YPA).
Mahomes has finished as the QB22, QB17, QB19, QB27, and QB17 in five of his last six games.
Yikes. So what are teams doing?
Over his last six games, Mahomes has been blitzed on just 14% of his dropbacks – which is by far the lowest rate in the league.
Mahomes has been poor when defenses do not blitz as he’s completed just 59.7% of his throws (27th out of 29 QBs) for just 6.3 YPA (22nd) and an 81.3 passer rating (23rd) against three and four man pressure looks over his last six games.
So, what Chiefs’ opponents are doing is playing a bunch of two-high safety looks (Cover 2, 2-man, Cover 4, Cover 6) and just forcing Mahomes to beat them. And that is working…
Over his last six games, Mahomes has completed just 62.7% of his throws (28th out of 33 QBs) for 6.5 YPA (20th) against two-high safety coverage looks.
So, there is one caveat to all the stuff above. Mahomes has been mediocre or worse in five of his last six games. So what about the other? Well, that was against these Raiders, who played just 12 snaps of two-high safety looks on Mahomes pass attempts. Mahomes finished as the QB1 against them. The Raiders did drop 2 INT during the game, but it would likely be wise for DC Gus Bradley to switch up from his traditional single high looks.
TE Darren Waller (knee, oblique) is now day to day, as opposed to week to week, Bisaccia said.— Vic Tafur (@VicTafur) December 6, 2021
RB Kenyan Drake will leave for Ala. to have ankle surgery. #Raiders
With Drake out for the season and Jalen Richard (COVID) likely out (he’s a vocal anti-vaxxer), it’s time for Josh Jacobs to win leagues for folks.
Kenyan Drake broke his ankle, and Josh Jacobs handled:— Jake Tribbey (@JakeTribbey) December 6, 2021
*50/59 offensive snaps (85%)
*13/14 backfield carries (93%)
*30/39 backfield routes (77%)
*Career-high 9 targets (most by 3)
Jalen Richard is currently on the COVID-19 list (unvaccinated).
Jacobs was obviously a major headache for the first 2.5 months of the season, but he’s healthier now as the entire roster collapses around him. His 85% snap share and 9 catches in Week 13 against the Team were both career-highs. I can’t imagine his role is going to shrink much with just Peyton Barber behind him.
If Waller doesn’t play, Foster Moreau is worth another shot as a streamer despite absolutely bombing last week, while WR Hunter Renfrow is the one pass-catcher you can start every week here. In the three games that Waller has missed or left early, “Third and Renfrow” has led the Raiders in targets in each game with 8, 9, and 10 looks. He’s put up 7/58, 8/134, and 9/102 without Waller.
Do I feel Carr is a better QB than Mariota, Yes. But does the offense need a spark? Yes, what do you have to lose. Jobs are on the line. Davis should insist that you see what you have with Mariota. https://t.co/fVmdrFwz8Q— Evan Groat (@Egroat5) December 9, 2021
But what does an objective onlooker see? I consulted the most objective onlooker there is — our Greg Cosell — and his film notes this week. He does see some concerns with Carr’s tape.
“Raiders well-designed flood opposite concept on first 3rd quarter possession but Carr was a beat late to Moreau on the intermediate crosser and that allowed LB Holcomb to play the throw from underneath; Carr stayed too long on Edwards vertical route before coming to Moreau, That’s a throw you have to make
Carr too many plays in which he breaks down in the pocket with no pressure, Result is he leaves intermediate and vertical throws on the field – Carr has had that issue throughout his career”