The Oakland Raiders visit Sun Life Stadium tomorrow to play the Miami Dolphins. The Raiders, led by former Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer, lead the AFC West by a game over the hard charging Denver Broncos and Tim Tebow. Meanwhile, the Dolphins are sitting in the basement of the AFC East, but have been playing solid football over the last four weeks. As the Dolphins look to get back on the winning side of the column, and the Raiders attempt to continue their three game winning streak, the Oakland offense will match up against a vastly improved Dolphins defense.
The Oakland offense currently ranks as the 12th ranked offense in the NFL. They have the 18th ranked passing game, while their rushing attack comes in at number four.
The Raiders have thrown the ball for 2,465 yards this season, with 13 passing touchdowns, and 15 interceptions. After joining the team, Palmer has gone 79-for-136, for 1,212 yards, with 6 touchdowns and 8 interceptions. Since the bye week, Palmer has thrown for 332 yards (vs. Denver), 299 yards (at San Diego), 164 yards (at Minnesota), and 301 yards (vs. Chicago). He has 6 touchdowns and 5 interceptions over that span, with three of those picks coming in the loss to the Broncos.
In protection, the Raiders have only allowed 19 sacks all season, which gives them the fifth lowest total in the league.
On the ground, the Raiders are missing starting running back Darren McFadden, but second string rusher Michael Bush hasn't missed a step. Since taking over for McFadden against the Kansas City Chiefs, Bush has rushed for 530 in just 5 games, to include 157 yards three weeks again against the San Diego Chargers. The team is tied for second in the NFL with 14 rushing touchdowns, one behind the Carolina Panthers.
Turning to ProFootballFocus.com, the Raiders are ranked as the 19th best team in the NFL. They have the 10th ranked passing attack, and 12th ranked rushing game. The team's pass blocking grades out as the 23rd best in the NFL, while run blocking falls one more spot, to 24th.
Overall, the Raiders offense seems like a high octane attack that has holes. They can come out with Carson Palmer throwing the ball, or turn to Michael Bush and hit you on the ground, but their offensive line appears to struggle blocking for either scenario. If the Dolphins can generate pressure on Palmer, and continue to defend the run like they have the last few weeks, holding teams to an average of 72.2 yards per game over the past five weeks (62.3 yards the last three weeks), the Dolphins can disrupt the Raiders attack - and ultimately win this game.