Philip Rivers & San Diego Chargers (-6) Visit Oakland Raiders As Decided Favorites

October 9th, 2010 – by Alex

The San Diego Chargers (2-2) will aim to get their first victory away from their home field on Sunday when they take on the Oakland Raiders (1-3) in a battle of AFC West teams. Coverage of this game is expected to start at 4:15pm EST and can be seen on CBS as well as DirecTV channel 715.

The Chargers came off a disappointing loss to the Seattle Seahawks two weeks ago by virtually demolishing the Arizona Cardinals 41-7 last week. Quarterback, Philip Rivers and tight end, Antonio Gates continued to show why they are becoming one of the most feared tandems in the league as they combined for two touchdowns on the day. Coming into this weekend, Rivers has the fifth best quarterback ranking in the league with Gates clearly being his favorite target. The running game has also been on point for the Chargers as running back, Mike Tolbert rushed for 100 yards and a touchdown, while Ryan Mathews also pitched in with 55 yards and one touchdown.

Theoretically, the Chargers shouldn’t have any problems stopping a horrendous Raiders passing attack. Look for them to stack the box and prevent the run against Oakland, and simply hope that the aerial attack for this unit doesn’t magically come alive. Offensively, look for this team to be a little more cautious when throwing the pass against the Raiders solid pass defense, and to simply stick with a winning rushing formula they developed in last week’s blowout.

Meanwhile, the Raiders will try to overcome a questionable quarterback situation in Oakland to defeat their in division rivals. In their favor, though, is the fact that they are the sixth best rushing team in the league. Look for running back, Darren McFadden to try to lead said running attack against an at-times fierce, yet at times complacent Chargers defensive unit. Also in the Raiders favor is the fact that they can stick Nnamdi Asomugha on various San Diego receivers and make life difficult for Rivers. Asomugha, one of the best cornerbacks in the league, leads the Raiders’ third ranked defense against the pass.

The Raiders will need to be near perfect on defense to compensate for the lack of scoring they will no doubt endure in this game. They have all the necessary pieces to bother Rivers and Gates, however stopping the run will need to be a priority. Further, if there is ever a great game for the Raiders’ throwing attack to come alive, this is it.

Traditionally, the Chargers have absolutely owned the Raiders. Through the last 13 meetings between these squads, the Raiders are 0-13. They’re also 14-4 versus the Raiders against the spread since 1992.

Game Lines: Oddsmakers are expecting recent history to repeat itself, so the Raiders are +6 for this game according to the NFL Week 5 Betting Odds while the over/under has been set at a total of 45 points (odds courtesy of Bodog Sportsbook). Looking at the NFL ATS Standings, both teams ATS record is the same as their overall record, Chargers (2-2) & Raiders (1-3).

ATS Betting Trends: The Chargers are 18-8 against the spread in their last 26 games in October and 24-11-4 against the spread in their last 39 games versus the AFC West. Meanwhile, the Raiders are 7-1 against the spread in their last 8 games following an against the spread loss and 4-1 against the spread in their last 5 games after allowing more than 30 points in their previous game.

Head to Head Betting Trends: In the last 8 games played in Oakland, the San Diego Chargers are 7-1 ATS. That trend goes with the favorite being 10-3 ATS in the last 13 meetings. Another trend in favor of the Chargers, 11-3 ATS in the last 14 meetings overall. To say the head to head NFL Betting Trends are in favor of the Chargers is a bit of an understatement.

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