Opponent: at Pittsburgh
Time: 10 a.m.
Line: Steelers by 5
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Records: Raiders 4-3, Steelers 4-4
TV/Radio: Ch. 13 (Ian Eagle, Dan Fouts), 1140
FIVE THINGS TO WATCH
Return to glory? A victory on the road Sunday will give the Raiders their best record at the midpoint since 2001 and serve notice that first-year coach Jack Del Rio’s rebuilding process is well ahead of schedule. “It’s great what we have going on now,” Raiders running back Latavius Murray said, “but we want to continue doing what we’re doing.” Namely, playing with a swagger not seen since Jon Gruden was scowling on the sideline instead of analyzing in the TV booth.
Bullish Ben: Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger played rusty last week in his first game back after missing a month with a sprained knee. The Bengals intercepted three of his passes, including one that set up Cincinnati’s game-winning drive. Still, Roethlisberger isn’t backing off the idea from offensive coordinator Todd Haley in the preseason that Pittsburgh can average 30 points. “I don’t see why anything has changed, and it shouldn’t,” Roethlisberger said.
Run stuffers: The Raiders have gone 11 consecutive games without allowing a 100-yard rusher and have been one of the toughest teams to run against. Oakland is second in the NFL, allowing 82.9 yards per game, and is third at 3.7 yards per carry. The Raiders shut down the Jets’ Chris Ivory last week. Ivory, who came into the game averaging more than 100 yards, was held to 17 on 15 carries and was hit for a loss on six runs.
Careful, careful: While injuries are an easy scapegoat, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin has a more blunt assessment of why his team has lost consecutive games for the first time since 2013. The Steelers have turned the ball over six times the past two weeks and were flagged 10 times against the Bengals. That’s not winning football regardless of who is or who isn’t in uniform. “We have to win the turnover battle,” Tomlin said, “and we have to take better care of the football than we have in the last two weeks.”
Fast starters: The Raiders have jumped on teams early the past two weeks. They scored on their first seven drives against San Diego two weeks ago and followed that with scores on six of the first seven drives last week against the Jets. “We’re doing some good things,” Murray said. “We need to continue to build on that. There’s still things we leave out on the field and things we can get better at. We keep working to be great.”
Out: LB Neiron Ball (knee)
Probable: DL Denico Autry (concussion), CB TJ Carrie (shoulder), DT Justin Ellis (ankle), CB Keith McGill (foot), S Charles Woodson (shoulder/knee)
Out: LB Terence Garvin (knee), TE Matt Spaeth (knee)
Probable: S Will Allen (ankle), WR Martavis Bryant (illness), CB William Gay (not injury related), LB James Harrison (not injury related), TE Heath Miller (not injury related), S Mike Mitchell (concussion), DE Stephon Tuitt (knee), QB Michael Vick (hamstring), WR Markus Wheaton (ankle)
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
at San Diego
vs. N.Y. Jets
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vs. San Diego
at Kansas City