Before the start of the season, the Oakland Raiders and Jacksonville Jaguars were considered the two worst teams in the league. Many looked at the Week 2 matchup between both teams as a measuring stick to determine which team was indeed the worst.
While the Raiders are rebuilding, the team showed potential in their Week 1 matchup against the Indianapolis Colts and continued to build on that in a 19-9 victory over the Jaguars.
Against the Jaguars, Darren McFadden had his best performance in recent memory as he ran for 129 yards while catching four passes for 28 yards. The defense was also solid for the Raiders as the team recorded a season-high five sacks.
While it isn’t a significant jump, the Raiders moved up to No. 29 out of 32 via ESPN’s NFL Power Rankings:
No. 32 – Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2)
No. 31 – Cleveland Browns (0-2)
No. 30 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-2)
No. 29 – Oakland Raiders (1-1)
No. 28 – New York Jets (1-1)
While the Raiders only beat the Jaguars, the Raiders have slowly exceeded expectations and have surprised some people with their strong performances in Week 1 and 2.
Here’s the rankings for the rest of the AFC West via ESPN:
No. 2 – Denver Broncos (2-0)
No. 13 – Kansas City Chiefs (2-0)
No. 16 – San Diego Chargers (1-1)
After impressive Week 2 performances, the Chiefs moved up seven spots while the Chargers moved up 10 spots. The Chiefs’ defense has been impressive so far with a league-leading 35.4 expected points added while Philip Rivers was impressive in a road victory over the Philadelphia Eagles.
The Raiders play the Denver Broncos in Week 3 and have the opportunity to surprise some more people and move up in next week’s rankings.