How Will the Raiders and Dolphins Respond After a Bye?

After six NFL teams were off during week four, just two rest in week five. The Oakland Raiders and Miami Dolphins, who played in London in week four, get an extra week to recover from their trip overseas. After being demolished by the Dolphins in the UK, Oakland changed coaches during the bye week; Miami, on the other hand, is back in AFC East contention following their win. How will each team do following a bye week?

After six NFL teams were off during week four, just two rest in week five. The Oakland Raiders and Miami  Dolphins, who played in London in week four, get an extra week to recover from their trip overseas. After being demolished by the Dolphins in the UK, Oakland changed coaches during the bye week; Miami, on the other hand, is back in AFC East contention following their win. How will each team do following a bye week?

The Raiders are 0-4 on the season, but have played two competitive games and are 2-2 against the number. They fell on opening day to the Jets in New York 19-14, and lost on the road against New England 16-9 in week three. Oakland’s only home game was a 30-14 setback against Houston. After the Raiders fell 38-14 to the Fins, coach Dennis Allen was shown the door. Offensive line coach Tony Spurano will now take over the team on an interim basis.

After the bye, the Raiders will play back-to-back games in the Bay Area against two of the surprise teams of 2014: San Diego and Arizona. The Raiders are an NFL worst 1-10 following a bye since 2003. Their lone victory came last season when they beat Pittsburgh 21-18. Despite their post-bye week win last year, the Raiders will be in tough against the Chargers and Cardinals, who are 4-1 and 3-1, respectively, this season.

In the opening weeks of 2014, the Dolphins sandwiched loses to Buffalo and Kansas City between wins over the Patriots and Raiders. After an impressive home win against the Patriots in week one, expectations in Miami were tempered due to lackluster losses to the Bills and Chiefs. A self-manufactured quarterback controversy – Coach Joe Philbin refused to announce Ryan Tannehill as the starting quarterback heading into the Oakland game – momentarily put the Dolphins’ entire season in question. However, both Miami and Tannehill bounced back with a dominating performance over the Raiders.

Miami will exit their bye week with two games against NFC North competition: a home date with the surging Green Bay Packers, followed by a trip to Chicago to face a suddenly struggling Bears squad. Under Philbin, Miami has gone 1-1 after byes. Two years ago they knocked off the Jets 30-9, but last year fell to the Bills 23-21. In both seasons Miami has gone 1-3 in the four games following their bye week. Over the last ten years, Miami is a mediocre 4-6 following a bye, and with Aaron Rogers and the Pack coming to town on Sunday, there will be little time for the Dolphins’ secondary to R-E-L-A-X.