If any team could have a do-over on the 2020 NFL season, the Las Vegas Raiders would be one of the first to line up for a shot.
An 8-8 record had the Raiders missing the postseason for the 17th time (yes, you read that right) since 2003. However, their disappointing campaign wasn't because of their offense. In reality, it was because Las Vegas' defense looked like they couldn't stop a nosebleed by allowing 29.9 points per game (30th).
Things might not get much better for the "Silver and Black" in 2021. According to ESPN's Mike Clay, the Raiders will have the 27th-hardest schedule in the league next season. Now, the order of the games isn't set and the strength of the schedule (SOS) is based on current rosters. Nevertheless, it's still an alarming revelation.
The AFC West is never any easy division to win for the Raiders, as they have to play perennial Super Bowl contenders in the form of the Kansas City Chiefs twice a year, along with an up-and-coming team like the Los Angeles Chargers. Although, somehow, the Raiders were actually 4-2 against their division last season.
Still, in addition to those tough battles, the Raiders have to play teams like the Indianapolis Colts, Cleveland Browns, Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers next season. Competing for an AFC playoff spot was already tough enough, but it'll be harder for the Raiders now that they have to face some of the conference's powerhouses.
As it stands, FanDuel Sportsbook is giving the Raiders +1800 odds to win the AFC West. Most fans of the team won't like that, especially considering those are the worst odds in the division. Unfortunately, SOS doesn't make those odds any more palpable.
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