CBS 5 Sports Director Dennis O’Donnell hosts “Gameday” every Sunday night at 11:30pm and offers his unique sports analysis here.

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS 5) – My, how the landscape of the AFC West has changed. Two weeks ago, it appeared the Oakland Raiders were in serious trouble after getting run over by the Denver Broncos. The media jumped off Hue Jackson’s bandwagon faster than Kris Humphries dumped Kim Kardashian.

But just like Hollywood, fortunes change quickly in the NFL, and they have for Oakland, and I believe their one-game lead is going to hold by the time you tune into GameDay Sunday night. (11:30pm, CBS 5, #1 rated show in its time slot)

While you are listening to Greg Papa scream “TOUCHDOWN RAIDERS,” the Chicago Bears announcer will be doing to same as the Bears host a struggling San Diego Chargers team that hasn’t won a game since week 7 while the Bears have won 4 straight and are surging towards a wild-card berth.

Not surprisingly, Chicago is doing it with defense. They forced six turnovers in a 37-13 thrashing of the fading Detroit Lions. During the Bears 4 game win streak, they have forced opponents to cough it up 12 times..that does NOT bode well for Phillip Rivers who leads in the NFL with 19 turnovers. Add to that a banged up offensive line, and well, you get the picture.

The Bears do the Raiders a big favor today at Soldier Field with a victory over San Diego.

Mile High City, Denver, where the Broncos host the New York Jets. Remember that landscape thing I was talking about? It appears, however unlikely, that Denver is the toughest roadblock to an AFC West title for the Raiders. Experts keep saying that Denver can’t keep winning by running the option. Why not? Richard Seymour said the Raiders knew it was coming and did nothing to stop it. You know the bizarre numbers by now. Tim Tebow completed just 2 passes last week and beat Kansas City. The Broncos ran the ball 55 times, their most since 1978, when a gallon of gas cost $63 cents, and Bruce Magowan was taking his girlfriend to see Grease for the 5th time. And while I’m not Hopelessly Devoted to Tebow, he does have a knack for completing the pass when he “has” too. The Raiders can tell you all about it. So can the Chiefs.

And how can I pick a Jets team when their own coach says it’s over???? So I’m taking Denver in this game in 4-yard run and a cloud of dust.

Finally..Monday Night Football..tune in early because the suspense won’t last. The New England Patriots host the Kansas City Chiefs, minus QB Matt Cassel who’s hand injury might end his season. Tyler Palko will start in his place for a Kansas City team that has lost back-to-back games by a combined score of 48-13.

The Pat win in a by the end of business today, I’m looking at the Raiders retaining their one-game lead in the West over Denver, with San Diego and Kansas City dropping two games back.


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