The first quarter of the season is wrapped up, and the Oakland Raiders are 2-2. Thus far, the 2017 campaign has been a bit of a curveball, and reminded us that in the NFL, anything can happen. With that being said, the Silver and Black are very much still in contention in the AFC West, and there shouldn't be cause for concern. The defense has been playing well, and the offense still has a majority of its capable playmakers.
Let's take a look at how the other teams in the division are performing as we enter Week 5.
In Week 4, the Broncos defended home field and prevented the Raiders from completing what was turning into a come-from-behind victory. Prior to the matchup, the Silver and Black were cognizant of the fact the Orange Crush had the best run defense in the league, and they showed just that on Sunday. Whether it was running back Marshawn Lynch, Jalen Richard, or DeAndre Washington, the Raiders weren't able to get anything going. On 15 rushing attempts, the trio of backs totaled 24 yards, which is unprecedented for this group.
The Broncos defense has been the backbone of the team for years now, and it'll get a week of rest in Week 5 due to the bye week, but will get back to work October 15 against the New York Giants.
Kansas City Chiefs
Through four weeks, the NFL has yet to figure out Head Coach Andy Reid's Chiefs squad. Rookie running back Kareem Hunt has taken the league by storm, and leads all rushers with 502 yards, which is 140 more than second-leading rusher Todd Gurley who has 362. It's common knowledge that the Chiefs have one of the better defenses in the league, but through the first quarter of the season the tale of the tape has been their offense.
Hunt has been the driving force on offense, motoring the ground game to the best in the league (163.5 yards per game), but the Chiefs are also second in total offense with 405.2 yards per game, only trailing the New England Patriots who average 423.8 yards per game. As the only remaining undefeated team in the league, the Chiefs will have plenty of opponents coming for them.
Their next bout will take place this Sunday at NRG Stadium in Houston, as they face Texans rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson and Co.
Los Angeles Chargers
Not the start many expected from this group, as they currently remain winless, and at the bottom of the division. After four weeks of nearly tasting victory, quarterback Philip Rivers will get the chance this Sunday against a team he shares a personal connection with.
In the 2003 NFL Draft, Rivers was selected by the New York Giants, but was ultimately traded to the San Diego Chargers in an interesting turn of events. Now, 14 years later, sitting with a record of 0-4, Rivers is trying to get his unit back on track. According to Chargers.com, No. 17 is in a situation he's never found himself in before, and he's doing anything necessary to fight their way back.
"I've never dealt with 0-4," Rivers said. "I've never dealt with 0-3. All the way back, I can't remember 0-3 in anything. This is new territory for all of us. There's probably a lot of guys who haven't had to handle this…You don't ever want to get good at handling it because what does that mean? It means you're dealing with it a lot, which isn't good."
Come Sunday, watching the 0-4 Giants host the Bolts at MetLife Stadium will be a battle between two veteran quarterbacks, whose career paths have always seemed to be linked.