Raiders vs. Chargers walkthrough

This is the 94th meeting between San Diego and Oakland. The Raiders lead the series, 55-36-2, but the Chargers have won five in a row over the Raiders and six of the last eight. The Chargers haven't defeated the Raiders six straight times since the first six meeting back in 1960-62. The Chargers are also looking for their third straight win in Oakland.

KICKOFF: Monday, 10:15 ET
GAMEDATE: 09/11/06
SURFACE: Grass
TV: ESPN, Brad Nessler, Ron Jaworski, Dick Vermeil, Bonnie Bernstein

2005 RANKINGS: Chargers: offense 10th (9th rush, 12th pass); defense 13th (1st rush, 28th pass). Raiders: offense 21st (29th rush, 10th pass); defense 27th (25th rush, 18th pass).

KEYS TO THE GAME: Oakland's biggest concern offensively is the revamped line, which will have a different starter at all five spots for the opener. RB LaMont Jordan must have early success, or the Chargers' athletic linebackers can come after QB Aaron Brooks, who is mistake-prone when under pressure.

However, if Jordan can muster some success against a very stout run defense, Brooks can test the Chargers' shaky secondary with WRs Randy Moss and Jerry Porter.

The Chargers have won the past five meetings, but QB Philip Rivers will make his first career start in primetime in one of the league's most hostile environments.

The Raiders struggled against the run last season and know they will see a heavy dose of RB LaDainian Tomlinson, but using a safety in support is dangerous because of the big-play ability of TE Antonio Gates.

FAST FACTS:

Raiders: Art Shell will be on the sideline as a head coach for the first time in 12 years. Moss needs two touchdown receptions to reach 100 in only his 126th game.

Chargers: Seek first six-game winning streak against the Raiders since 1960-62. Coach Marty Schottenheimer's 25 victories over the Raiders are his most against any team. Their 21 victories the past two seasons are their most in consecutive seasons since 23 from 1979-80.

PERSONNEL NEWS:

Raiders:

DE Lance Johnstone (shin) practiced and is expected to be well enough to be rush from the right side in nickel situations against San Diego.

WR Ronald Curry, who suffered a torn Achilles' in each of the last two seasons, will be the slot receiver when the Raiders go to sets with three wide receivers.

C Jake Grove (shoulder) has been limited in practice and coach Art Shell said he may err toward the side of caution and sit him against San Diego, meaning Corey Hulsey would start.

QB Aaron Brooks, making his first start for the Raiders, is 3-2 in season-opening starts with the New Orleans Saints.

RB LaMont Jordan rushed for 91 yards and averaged only 3.4 yards per carry in two games last season against San Diego.

Chargers:

PR Cletis Gordon is nursing a sore hand which has the Chargers concerned about him fielding punts Monday night. Look for Eric Parker to be back there.

Left tackle Leander Jordan (shoulder) continues to sit out of practice, which means if for some reason rookie Marcus McNeill has to leave the game Monday, the Chargers will be down to their fourth-string left tackle in Cory Lekkerkerker.

OLB Shaun Phillips will replace Steve Foley (gunshot wounds) in the starting lineup. Phillips has to prove he can be just as successful defending the run as he is against the pass.

WR Vincent Jackson (chest) is being counted on as the No. 3 wideout, but he has to get past his tag as being injury prone. He's worked all week.

ILB Donnie Edwards remains on the trading block and will until next month's deadline.

OLB Carlos Polk could be pressed into action on early downs if Phillips proves not to be stout against the run.


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