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Moore Predicts: Expecting a close one between Seahawks, Raiders in London

Seahawks RB Chris Carson sat out Week 10 with a hip injury. (AP)

I’m trying to figure out why the Seahawks are favored by only three points over the Raiders. Based on the Seahawks’ performance against the Rams and the Raiders performance all season, I would have made the Seahawks 6 1/2-point favorites if I’d been setting the line.

Improved run game makes facing Marshawn easier for Seahawks fans

I don’t get what anyone sees in the Raiders’ chances of winning this game. First off, I loved Jon Gruden in the Monday Night Football booth, but I didn’t understand why the Raiders wanted to give him $10 million a year for 10 years. Yes, he won the Super Bowl with Tampa Bay at the age of 39 in 2002. But his combined record in the next seven seasons? Just 46-55.

Then look at the Raiders’ start this year – 1-4, and they’re lucky to have beaten the Browns in overtime, getting the benefit of two controversial calls. They should be 0-5.

Check out the NFL stats – offensively they appear to be lighting it up, averaging 411 yards a game, but Derek Carr has short-circuited some of their drives with eight interceptions, including one from the 1-yard line last Sunday against the Chargers.

I don’t know what’s happened to Carr. Two years ago he threw for nearly 4,000 yards with 28 touchdown passes and six interceptions. In a stat that must be confounding to Raiders’ fans, Carr is completing 71 percent of his passes this year, but those INTs are killing him. He’s on a pace to throw 25 this year.

The biggest concern for the Seahawks should be Marshawn Lynch, who is on a pace for 1,000 yards this season. The Seahawks are 29th in rush defense, so if the Raiders spring the upset, it will be thanks to Beast Mode, who ran for 120 yards against the Browns.

But flip it around. The Raiders are 30th in total defense, allowing 404 yards a game. They’re almost equally bad in rush defense (28th) and pass defense (23rd). Worse, they allow 30 points a game, and the Seahawks are starting to click on offense, scoring 31 against the Rams.

Russell Wilson should have all day to throw this week – the Raiders have recorded just six sacks in five games.

It looks too obvious to think the Seahawks will win easily behind the running of Chris Carson and Mike Davis. So again, why are they favored by only three points? You should never think you’re smarter than the guys who set the lines in Vegas, and if you don’t believe me, you can learn the hard way if you want. I’m guessing it will be close throughout in London. We’ll be watching Sunday morning, at times wondering where the Seahawks’ team we saw last week is and then seeing them again in the fourth quarter when they rally to win and even their record at 3-3. Seahawks 31, Raiders 27.

Washington at Oregon (+3)

I expect the better version of the Huskies to show up on Saturday, the one that dominated BYU, while hoping the worse version does, the one that had to hold on to beat winless UCLA last week. We’re either going to see a team that still looks like a Final Four candidate or one that might be playing in the Alamo or lesser bowl at season’s end. They always say you should bet with your head, not your heart. Screw those guys. Ducks 34, Dawgs 24.

Have you listened to “Bark?” It’s Jim’s podcast about dogs, available at and wherever you find podcasts. If you’re interested in sponsoring “Bark,” please contact Jim at [email protected].

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