Key Matchups To Watch

Key Matchups: In the midst of a three-game win streak, Raiders head to New York for AFC clash with the Jets

After an undefeated home stand, the "Road Raiders" are getting back to business, as Head Coach Jon Gruden's squad now has back-to-back games outside the friendly confines of the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum.

First up is a Week 12 clash against a New York Jets team that is coming off a pair of wins, against the New York Giants and Washington Redskins respectively.

The Jets may currently be four games under.500, but we saw firsthand last week that you can't judge a team by its record. Kickoff at MetLife Stadium is scheduled for 10:00 a.m. PT; here are three key matchups to watch once game time rolls around.

Josh Jacobs, Jalen Richard and DeAndré Washington vs. Le'Veon Bell and Bilal Powell

If you like watching talented running backs go to work, you can't miss Sunday's battle at MetLife Stadium.

While the Raiders and Jets are currently on different trajectories – one has postseason aspirations while the other would probably call scraping back to .500 a success – both squads feature running backs who have the ability to take over a ballgame.

We rattle off Josh Jacobs' otherworldly stats each week, so I'll save you from reading the list once again, but just know that the rookie running back still finds himself in the upper echelon of backs in 2019.

Another running back who is among the most talented in the NFL? Le'Veon Bell, who while not statistically having a stellar 2019, is unquestionably a dude who has a ton of talent.

Both Jacobs and Bell – while no doubt the lead dogs in their running backs' rooms – also get a little help from their friends, and while the Silver and Black's rushing stats far exceed the Jets', New York is coming off one of its best rushing outings of the season.  

Especially considering the forecast in New York calls for rain on Sunday, I'll be watching the run game closely to see which team establishes its presence at the line of scrimmage.

Trayvon Mullen vs. Ryan Griffin

Since taking over a starting role on Paul Guenther's defense Week 8, the athletic rookie has equated himself very well to the NFL game.

The former Clemson Tiger has four passes defensed on the season, and is coming off one of the best performances of his young career in which he secured the win with a late interception courtesy of Ryan Finley.

While Jamison Crowder leads the Jets in both receptions (56) and receiving yards (562), Griffin went over the 100-yard mark last week against the Washington Redskins and now owns the team lead with four receiving touchdowns.

Headed into Sunday's showdown at MetLife Stadium, the Jets currently rank dead last in total offense, and while the numbers certainly don't paint a glorious picture for Adam Gase's group, the J-E-T-S are meeting the Raiders on the heels of one of their best offensive performances of the entire season.

Griffin is a crafty player, but I'm excited to watch how Mullen and the rest of the defensive backs handle him.

Raiders offensive line vs. Jamal Adams

Usually when you're worried about an opposing safety, you're worried that they're going to take away the middle of the field and make life miserable for your passing attack.

Well, the Raiders are in luck this week, because with Jamal Adams on the Jets' roster, you not only have to worry about that, you also have to worry about him wreaking havoc as a pass rusher.

You didn't misread that sentence, Adams has been on a tear as of late, registering five sacks over his past two games, and I don't think it's a coincidence that both those games have resulted in Jets' victories.

The Silver and Black's offensive line – while still no doubt the strength of the 2019 squad – had an uncharacteristically sloppy day last week against the Cincinnati Bengals, but I have a feeling that they're going to right the ship this Sunday.

If the Raiders want to fly back to the West Coast with a W, the big boys up front are going to have to find a way to keep Adams away from Derek Carr.

Take a look at the best photos from the Silver and Black's win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 11.

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