Raiders' division title hopes grounded, but playoffs still possible

KANSAS CITY -- Remember when the Oakland Raiders were a feel-good story riding a three-game winning streak and chasing not only a playoff berth but an AFC West division title. Yeah, that was like eight days ago. Since then, the Raiders have sprung oil leaks, popped a few gaskets and lost a wheel or two.

The Kansas City Chiefs put the finishing touches on this rough two-game stretch for Oakland with a 40-9 thumping at Arrowhead Stadium, dropping the Raiders to 6-6 on the season, a week after a 34-3 loss at the New York Jets.

And while all is not lost for the Raiders in their search for a postseason berth -- they are only one game out of the final AFC playoff spot and face the playoff-contending Tennessee Titans (7-5) in Oakland next week -- they are now out of the division title race and haven't shown much the past two games to make anyone a believer.

Describe the game in two words: Outplayed, outclassed. The Raiders just simply are not in the same class as the Chiefs at the moment, and while that may be hard for fans to hear, Oakland is still building something for the future while trying to compete in the present.

Troubling trend: The offense's inability to generate points. After taking a 3-0 lead at the Jets on their opening drive last week, the Raiders were shut out to the tune of 65-0 over their next seven quarters of football. And then there's this -- since taking a 10-0 lead on the Chiefs in Week 2, Oakland gave up 59 unanswered points to their divisional rivals. Only Daniel Carlson's 34-yard field goal to start the fourth quarter ended the skein.

QB breakdown: House of Horrors much? Look, this was not all Derek Carr's fault, but his throwing a ball away at the first hint of pressure on a third-down play in the first quarter upset a few teammates. And his receivers combining for 8 yards -- EIGHT! -- receiving through three quarters offered no help. Alas, Carr's record at Arrowhead Stadium fell to 0-6 as he completed 20 of 30 passes for 222 yards with a TD and two INTs, including a pick-six in the second quarter.

Pivotal play: It's hard to find just one in such a blowout but let's go with Carr's first interception, which ended the Raiders' first possession and set the tone. It was a strange throw as Carr had plenty of time, but threw the ball to tight end Darren Waller in a sea of three red Chiefs jerseys. Tyrann Mathieu came down with the pick.

Silver lining: Rookie running back Josh Jacobs and the offensive line got back on track after last week's stonewalling by the Jets. Jacobs ran for 104 yards, on 17 carries (although he only had 9 yards as the Raiders fell desperately behind in the second half) against the NFL's No. 30-ranked rushing defense. He went over 1,000 rushing yards on the season and sits at 1,061 yards with four games to play.