Chargers vs Raiders Week 18 Predictions, Odds, Picks, and Preview: AFC Wild Card at Stake : NFL : Sports World News

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INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA – Derek Carr #4 of the Las Vegas Raiders throws a pass during the second half against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 02, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo : Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

A blockbuster showdown will be heading our way in Week 18 as the Las Vegas Raiders and the Los Angeles Chargers square off in a key clash at Allegiant Stadium. Who will prevail in this Chargers vs Raiders game? Here’s a breakdown of this winner-take-all AFC West clash.

Los Angeles Chargers installed as -2.5 favorites

The Los Angeles Chargers moved back into playoff contention after recording a comprehensive 34-13 win over the Denver Broncos in Week 17. It was a massive victory for the Chargers, who climbed to seventh place in the AFC standings with a 9-7 slate.

With the win, the Chargers are in control of their playoff destiny once again. They only need to beat the Raiders in Week 18 to reach the postseason. Achieving that task will not be easy for the Chargers, with the Raiders needing a victory as well in their regular-season finale for them to grab a wild card spot.

One guy who needs to step up for LA in Week 18 is Justin Herbert. He was outstanding in the win against the Broncos, completing 22 of 31 passes for 237 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. Herbert made history with that performance, setting a franchise single-season record with 35 touchdown passes. He broke the previous record of 34 touchdowns set by Philip Rivers in the 2008 season.

For the Chargers to grab the road win, they must continue their excellent play on the defensive end. LA had one of its best defensive performances this season in the win against Denver, with the Chargers snapping their 10-game streak of allowing at least 21 points.

Related Article: Tom Brady Calls for Help for Antonio Brown After Mid-game Meltdown in Bucs’ Win Over Jets

Las Vegas Raiders enter Week 18 as +2.5 underdogs

Las Vegas’ playoff hopes remained very much alive after the Raiders recorded a thrilling 23-20 win over the Indianapolis Colts in their AFC showdown in Week 17. The Raiders are currently in eighth place in the AFC standings with a 9-7 slate. They share the same record as the Colts and the Chargers, who hold the last two wild card spots in the AFC.

The Raiders, who have won their last three games, will look to keep the momentum going against the Chargers. For Las Vegas to grab its fourth consecutive win, the Raiders need to get a superb performance from Derek Carr. He completed 24 of 31 passes for 255 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions in the win against the Colts.

The Raiders also need to establish the run game against the Chargers. They ran for just 85 yards in Week 17 against Indianapolis. That is a far cry from the 160 yards they gained on the ground in Week 16 against the Broncos.

It is critical for the Raiders that Josh Jacobs has a monster showing against the Chargers. He ran for just 63 yards on 16 carries in the win against Indianapolis. Jacobs will need to punish a Chargers team that is third-worst in the NFL in rushing defense, allowing 136.7 yards per game this season.

Writer’s Predictions

Las Vegas wins to grab a spot in the playoffs.

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