Photo credit: bleacherreport.com
By Joe Hawkes-Beamon
The Oakland Raiders, fresh off an impressive win in Indianapolis in Week 4, are off to London where they will host (that’s right, host) the Chicago Bears in Week 5 for the NFL’s first-ever matchup in the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Sunday’s game will mark the second-straight year that the Raiders have played in London, and the fifth time in six years playing an international game.
Kickoff for this game is at 10:00 a.m. PT this Sunday, Oct. 6.
The all-time series is tied at seven wins apiece, but the Bears have won the previous matchup between the two teams, 22-20, back in 2015 at Soldier Field.
Last week, the Raiders dispatched the Colts, 31-24, behind a fast start by the offense who jumped out to an early 14-0 lead. Raiders quarterback Derek Carr was terrific, leading Oakland to touchdowns on three of their first four drives of the game.
“We finished our drives, we converted on third downs, we were efficient running the football. Everyone did their job,” Carr said after the win that pulled Oakland to 2-2 on the season. When everyone does their job, we can score points.
Carr was 21 of 31 with 189 yards and two TDs. On the game’s opening drive Carr was sharp, completing 6 of 6 passes for 53 yards and an 18-yard TD to tight end Foster Moreau to give Oakland an early 7-0 lead.
Oakland’s second offensive series of the game ended after wide receiver Trevor Davis ran past the Colts’ defense on the left side for a TD that propelled the Raiders to a 14-0 lead before fans at Lucas Oil Stadium sat down.
Wide receiver Tyrell Williams caught a touchdown for the fourth-straight game this season, a 19-yarder from Carr that gave the Raiders a 21-7 lead.
Oakland’s defense preserved the win late in the fourth quarter.
With the Raiders clinging to a 24-17 lead, safety Erik Harris stepped in front of a Jacoby Brissett pass and returned it for a 30-yard pick-six that gave Oakland a 31-17 lead shortly before the two minute warning.
Harris’ interception was the first takeaway by the Raiders this season.
Chicago (3-1) is coming off a 16-6 victory over their NFC North rivals, the Minnesota Vikings at Solider Field in Week 4.
After starting quarterback Mitchell Trubisky was knocked out of the game on the first possession with a left shoulder injury, backup Chase Daniels would stabilize the Bears’ offense over the Vikings’ defense.
Daniels threw for 195 yards and a touchdown while completing 22 of 30 passes. With Trubisky most likely out for Sunday’s game, expect Daniels to get the start against the Silver and Black.
But the real calling card for Chicago has been its defense, which has made life difficult for opposing teams this season.
Through four games, Chicago is the fifth-ranked defense in the NFL, surrendering just 290.8 yards per game, but rank second in total points allowed (45), points per game (11.3), and sacks (17.0).
Former Raiders linebacker/defensive end Khalil Mack leads Chicago with 4.5 sacks.
Mack who was traded to Chicago from Oakland before the start of last season, told NFL Network’s Deion Sanders following Chicago’s win over Minnesota that he’s looking forward to the matchup against his former team.
“That’s the one I’m looking forward to,” Mack told Sanders. “I can’t lie to you, man. It’s going to to be a big one.”
Vikings running back Dalvin Cook, who came into Sunday’s contest with an NFL-leading 375 yards rushing through four games, was held to just 35 yards on 14 carries.
The Bears lived in Minnesota’s backfield all day, sacking quarterback Kirk Cousins six times in the game.
Following Sunday’s game, both teams will enter their bye weeks before Oakland travels to Green Bay to face the Packers, and the Bears taking on the New Orleans Saints at home in Week 7 respectively.