How Raiders Odds vs. Broncos Change Without Jon Gruden, Plus AFC West Race Projections

How Raiders Odds vs. Broncos Change Without Jon Gruden, Plus AFC West Race Projections article feature image
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Jason O. Watson/Getty Images. Pictured: Raiders QB Derek Carr, former head coach Jon Gruden

  • The Raiders head to Denver to take on the Broncos in their first game since Jon Gruden's resignation.
  • Given the unprecedented nature of Gruden's departure, what impacts of this midseason coaching change should bettors expect?
  • Our analysts reveal how they've adjusted (or not adjusted) their betting models to project the Raiders odds -- and AFC West race -- without Gruden.

The swift end to Jon Gruden’s tenure as head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders is different from the midseason coaching change we typically see in the NFL.

For one, Gruden resigned in the wake of off-field issues — specifically the use of racist, misogynistic and homophobic language in emails detailed by the New York Times — not fired for underperforming. And unlike teams that typically contend with midseason coaching changes, the Raiders sit above .500 (3-2) and find themselves in the middle of what is shaping up to be a tight race for the AFC West.

Because of the nature of Gruden’s departure, there isn’t precedent to inform theories about potential impacts. That’s why we asked three of the six experts that power our NFL PRO Projections to break down how they’re adjusting their power ratings in the interim — and specifically how they’ve changed (or not changed) their projected spread for the Raiders’ Week 6 matchup at the Broncos.


» What are NFL PRO Projections? We blend the statistical models of six experts to project consensus spreads, over/unders and moneylines for each NFL game. We then use those consensus projections to identify any edges based on current odds.

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Raiders Odds & Projections Without Jon Gruden

Stuckey: I’m in pure wait-and-see mode with the Raiders.

We don’t really have many examples of this happening in the past. Usually, when a coach is canned midseason, it happens on an extremely bad team. But this is a very unique circumstance, so I’m going to err on the side of caution in the short term and not make any adjustments to the Raiders’ power rating while staying away from betting this week’s game.

I’ll certainly be watching and analyzing them this week, though, to try and determine what the impact is and will be in the future.

Travis Reed: I haven’t made any changes to my Raiders’ power rating as of yet. I will make a change if I see a big drop in efficiency or anything else that is out of the norm, though.

Here are the projected AFC West odds based on my model as of writing:

  • Chargers: 63.9%
  • Broncos: 16.3%
  • Chiefs: 12.6%
  • Raiders: 7.2%
Jon Gruden
Ethan Miller/Getty Images. Pictured: Former Raiders head coach Jon Gruden (right)

Raheem Palmer: Gruden wasn’t considered one of the league’s best selectors of talent — or one of the best coaches in general — but where he did shine is in putting together offensive game plans. The Raiders already have a struggling offensive line, so I’m expecting this offense to come down to Earth without Gruden.

That said, the Broncos are dealing with injuries on both sides of the ball, which led to me downgrading their power rating even before back-to-back losses to the Ravens and Steelers. While Teddy Bridgewater is a solid quarterback, he’s not a quarterback who can rise above the talent around him and push past the deficiencies around him to elevate a team.

All that to say, I’ve made only a small change to the Raiders’ power rating for this week.

As a whole, the AFC West appears to be a two-team race between the Chargers and Chiefs, the latter of whom are just 2-3 on the season but should find themselves in the mix for the division given their prolific offense — if their turnover luck can regress to the mean.

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