NFL Gridiron Gab Week 15 Preview: Detroit Lions at Oakland Raiders

The playoff hunt is in full swing heading into Week 15 with the Lions holding the sixth seed just ahead of the self-destructing Bears and Cowboys.  Ironically, it seems that the sixth seed is destined to go to the team that self destructs least, rather than the team that plays the best over the next three games.

Speaking of self destructing, the Raiders are in full-blown panic mode.  The Lions have been dealing with injuries of late, but the Raiders have been decimated by them.  Jacoby Ford, Denarius Moore, Darren McFadden, Taiwan Jones and Louis Murphy have all missed several games and they are the only explosive players the Raiders have on offense.  The Raiders surrendered their division lead after two embarrassing losses the last two weeks, while the Lions just put a few embarrassing losses behind them last week.  This game pits two of the most undisciplined, hot and cold teams against one another in a battle of desperation.  It will be a very interesting Sunday afternoon to say the least.

Offense:

The Raiders defense is very similar to the Lions as they are built around a talented and deep defensive line.  They are followed by an underrated linebacking corps and a better than expected secondary.  Like the Lions, the Raiders’ defensive line generates a lot of pressure, but they are susceptible to the run.  The Raiders do have some talent at linebacker, but they are not nearly as strong a group as the Lions, and they can be exploited.  In addition, the secondary has had it’s fair share of struggles due to injuries and inconsistency.

The Lions are going to get Kevin Smith back for this game, which means they should be far more balanced on offense than in weeks past.

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