- The average NFL playoff odds of the Oakland Raiders have plummeted from +370 to +480
- The issue over WR Antonio Brown’s helmet has proven a huge distraction during training camp
- Should bettors back this team to make the postseason during their last season in Oakland?
Entering NFL training camps, putting “Oakland Raiders” and “playoffs” in the same sentence made about as much sense as mixing peanut butter and ketchup.
Entering the third week of the NFL preseason, putting the two together makes about as much sense as . . . well, believing that the Raiders will actually make the playoffs.
The soap opera that is the Silver and Black is making for entertaining programming on the HBO show Hard Knocks. But it’s revealing that, in terms of team building, the Raiders look to be somewhere between a rock and a hard place.
Across online sportsbooks, the average 2019 NFL playoff odds for the Raiders have taken a nosedive, going from +370 to +480.
Will the Oakland Raiders Qualify for the 2019 NFC Playoffs?
|Outcome||Odds at Bovada*|
*Odds taken 8/22/19.
The Raiders have made the playoffs just once since the 2002 season.
One Helmet of a Mess
Wide receiver Antonio Brown, the Pro Bowl player the Raiders brought in to the be the centerpiece of their offense and paid $12 million in guaranteed money, walked out of camp and threatened to retire from football if he wasn’t permitted to wear his old unapproved helmet.
— NFL (@NFL) August 21, 2019
The Raiders knew they were getting a diva when they acquired Brown from the Pittsburgh Steelers. What they didn’t know was that Brown was a headgear headcase.
The sportsbooks that a fading Oakland’s odds are mocking him.
Antonio Brown practicing in his new helmet today pic.twitter.com/moPxj1vk1R
— MyBookie Sportsbook (@betmybookie) August 20, 2019
Even other professional teams are making fun of him.
— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) August 22, 2019
He’s appealed to get permission to wear his old, less-protective helmet, which has opened Brown up to further criticism.
Don’t Know Much About Geography
This week, the Raiders are in Canada to play a preseason game against the Green Bay Packers in Winnipeg. Raiders punter AJ Cole III arrived in the Manitoba city wearing a shirt that said Winnipeg, Alberta.
He later apologized for his geographical error.
— AJ Cole III (@AJCole90) August 22, 2019
Next season, the Raiders are slated to move into a new $1.8-billion, 65,000-seat stadium in Las Vegas.
— Oakland Raiders (@Raiders) August 22, 2019
In 1981, their last season in Oakland before leaving for Los Angeles, the Raiders missed the playoffs. In 1994, their last season in LA before opting to return to Oakland, the Raiders missed the playoffs.
Raiders in Tough in AFC West
Two of the best teams in the NFL reside in the same division as the Raiders. The Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Chargers were both 12-4 and playoff participants. The Chiefs won the division and played in the AFC Championship Game.
I searched several sites today for AFC West predictions. They ALL pick the @Raiders to be last in league most predicting 5 to 6 wins max. I love it. Disrespect is a very good motivator!
— 50yearRaidersfan (@ORaiderfan) August 16, 2019
The Denver Broncos were 6-10 but thanks to a stout defense, could very easily find themselves in the conversation for an AFC Wild Card spot in the 2019 postseason.
Playoffs? Don’t Talk About Playoffs
If you think the Raiders are also in that conversation, then you’re in need of a talking to.
Oakland went 4-12 last season. It was the 15th time in 16 seasons that they endured a losing campaign. It was the 12th time over those 16 years that the Raiders posted double digits in the loss column.
They’ve played one playoff game since 2002 and haven’t won a postseason game since that season’s AFC Championship.
During their glory years, when the franchise won three Super Bowls, the Raiders employed the slogan Commitment to Excellence.
Amidst the chaos and uncertainty, allow former Colts head coach Jim Mora to suggest for a slogan to anyone considering backing Oakland to make the playoffs.
Let's have fun and keep it civil.