NFL Free Pick | Broncos @ Raiders

Monday night marks the 120thmeeting between the Denver Broncos and the Oakland Raiders. Seven of the Broncos-Raiders games have come in a season opener.

Denver really controlled the series for most of past decade, but the Raiders have actually won four of the last seven matchups. Heading into Monday night, we finally know the fate of one Antonio Brown…and that will have an impact on our earnings potential.

 



Game: Denver Broncos (0-0) at Oakland Raiders (0-0)

When: 10:20 PM ET, Monday, September 9, 2019

Where: RingCentral Coliseum, Oakland, CA

Current Line: Denver -2.5  Total: 42.5

TV Coverage: ABC


Brown, of course, was acquired by Oakland in the offseason via a trade with the Pittsburgh Steelers. The seven-time Pro Bowler then repeatedly made newsreels for his behavior rather than his ability to catch a football and score touchdowns.

First was the frostbitten feet he got while sitting in a cryogenic chamber with no shoes.

Then came a delicious bowl of crybaby soup while pouting about a helmet that the NFL considered illegal to wear. Brown then went on to call Oakland GM Mike Mayock something he shouldn’t have called him and eventually asked the Raiders to release him.

 


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After all that, Raiders head coach Jon Gruden can now breathe a sigh of relief…or can he? Now, Gruden has to figure out a way to deal with a Denver pass rush – Von Miller and Bradley Chubb – that delivered 44 sacks (eighth-best in the NFL) last year.

Gruden might feel a little better if his offensive line hadn’t surrendered 52 sacks last season. One good thing – only two of those sacks came against Denver.

On the other end, the Raiders posted the league’s 30th-ranked run defense last year. Denver RBs Philip Lindsay, a 1,000-yard rusher last year, and Royce Freeman averaged over six yards per carry against the Raiders last season.

The Broncos will also have veteran Joe Flacco under center giving Denver GM John Elway a much more solid option than his previous four quarterbacks.

Oakland is playing at home, which may help them somewhat, but they are just 4-16 SU in their last 20 games and 3-11 SU when facing AFC opponents. In the last five meetings between the two teams, the Under has hit all five times.

While the UNDER is enticing, I like the running game, defense, and experience at quarterback to be the reason why Denver covers on Monday night.

NFL Free Pick: Broncos -2.5

Pick by Rick

 

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