Stephen Dunn Getty Images Sport
Let Oakland beat themselves.
There are two ways to beat the Oakland Raiders.
One, you go out and pick off six passes, blowing them out in their own house. Sorta like the Chiefs did last time they visited Oakland.
Two, you listen to Marty and let Oakland beat themselves.
1. Take Marty's advice: just keep it close
"As a football team there was a philosophy relative to how you beat the Raiders," Marty Schottenheimer was fond of saying about the the bad guys in Oakland. "That was you went into the game with the understanding that the first half would come and go and you would want to stay in the contest but if you stayed the course into the fourth quarter you would find a way to somehow beat them or they'd beat themselves and you'd end up the winner anyway. That's the way they functioned in my view."
LOL. I don't know why I find that so hilarious but it is. The Raiders choking is ingrained in the culture of their franchise -- not just one bad season. Oh boy.
Also: please appreciate Marty's fashion sense. Some people just get it.
2. Make the Raiders show why they have the worst defense in the league
The Chiefs give up 27 points per game. The Raiders give up nearly 31 points per game, the highest in the league. So apparently the Raiders are prone to the same blowout losses that the Chiefs are.
The key for the Chiefs is going to be attacking the Raiders offensively and building some sort of lead. The Raiders offense is as awful as the Chiefs (well, maybe not quite) so the team who builds the early lead may not have to worry too much about giving it up. I have this as a 16-13 game --- not many touchdowns scored. Just be the ones who get on the board first, Chiefs. Oakland's defense is awful for a reason. Take some chances.
Remember: the Raiders aren't as tough as they might seem. Sorta like this guy:
(Note: We can only hope Raider fans like this don't breed. Or they're contained to Oakland.)
3. Take advantage of Carson Palmer's mistakes
Because they're coming. There's no doubt they're coming.
Palmer the Raider has played the Chiefs three times, and he's thrown six picks -- three in one game, two in another game and then his best game, a two-touchdown, one-interception performance. The Chiefs have played Palmer four more times as a Bengal, where he threw for four touchdowns and three interceptions in two of those games, and zero touchdowns and interceptions in two other games.
That's 10 interceptions for Palmer in his last five games against the Chiefs. Capitalize on those mistakes!
4. Free Steve Breaston
Dwayne Bowe is out, which very well could be a disaster. No one else on the team has the experience or the production he has. The Chiefs are a young, inexperienced group behind him.
...What's that? The Chiefs have a six-year veteran receiver? AND he's had a 1,000 yard season? He had HOW MANY yards for the Chiefs last season? He's getting paid HOW MUCH?!
Oh, yeah. Steve Breaston. Time to play that dude.
Breaston, as you know, hasn't been playing for the Chiefs. Jamar Newsome, the practice squader, has been taking some snaps instead, along with Jon Baldwin. In Week 11, when Baldwin was out, Breaston played in 74 percent of the snaps, the most he's played since Week 1.
With Bowe out, time to see Breaston in there again.
5. Let "the guy" do his thing
You think I was going to write this without including the most obvious key of them all? Give Jamaal Charles the ball.
Charles' career high touches in season is 275 -- 230 carries and 45 receptions in the 2010 season. He's now at 270 total touches this season -- 240 carries, 30 receptions. So sometime on Sunday he'll break his personal record for touches in a season and I'll remember back to a year ago when the big question about Charles was whether he could hold up as "the guy" throughout the course of the season. As 610 Sports' Carrington Harrison said earlier this week, if nothing else this season, we learned that Jamaal can indeed be "the guy".
Jamaal has kept the Chiefs competitive at times, won a game for them (New Orleans) and sometimes was the only guy to put points on the board (Cleveland).
There's no where else to put it so here's a picture of Jamaal after he saw the movie Ted: