Wedged between a pair of games against last season's Super Bowl participants, the Kansas City Chiefs appear to get a bit of a breather with a visit to the winless Raiders.
Just don't tell that to the Chiefs.
“We don't even talk like that around here and that's not even the way we think, not the type of group that we have,” quarterback Alex Smith said.
“We do such a great job I think of kind of living week to week. And this week it's a short week. Guys immediately right after the game knew what we had in hand. Division game, on the road, there are too many things at stake here for us to even talk like that.”
Kansas City (7-3) moved into a tie for first place in the AFC West by defeating defending Super Bowl champion Seattle at home last week. The task this week is to avoid a letdown against the Raiders (0-10) to assure the Chiefs are still in first when Denver visits Kansas City next week in a game that could determine the division champ.
The fact that the Raiders are a division rival makes the task of focusing on this week's game a bit easier for the Chiefs.
“When you go to the Black Hole, you better be ready. We know that,” coach Andy Reid said. “That's a given, and this is a great rivalry that's far exceeded my time as a head football coach in this league, so we understand that these are two competitive football teams when they play each other. The records, you just throw the record out.”
The Raiders would love to be able to throw their record out. They have lost 16 straight games dating to last season, going more than a year without a win.
Oakland is three losses away from tying the franchise record for longest skid and six shy of joining the 2008 Detroit Lions as the only teams to go winless in a 16-game season.
“We have to keep playing,” safety Charles Woodson said. “We have another game on Thursday night against another tough team and division opponent. We just have to put it behind us. We have to win.”
Raiders cornerbacks TJ Carrie and Carlos Rogers will miss tonight's game because of injuries. Carrie will miss his second game in three weeks with an ankle injury and Rogers will be out for a fourth straight game with an injured knee.