Lynch, 23, started two games as a rookie last season but has been sidelined this year because of a shoulder sprain. The former Memphis standout was named the starter this week ahead of Trevor Siemian and Brock Osweiler.
Denver (3-7) has made hard changes on and off the field to try to stop a six-game losing streak that has plummeted the Broncos to last place in the AFC West. Earlier this week, the team fired offensive coordinator Mike McCoy and promoted Bill Musgrave to the role of interim offensive coordinator and play-caller for the rest of the season.
Musgrave is expected to simplify the offense with Lynch under center.
"Sometimes, it's doing the same thing more often," Broncos head coach Vance Joseph told the Denver Post. "You can kind of master it. I feel that we have a good offense and a lot of good plays that we miss. But we hadn't mastered anything. I think it's going to bring a sense of consistency to our offense that we can master four or five concepts, and that's good enough to get better."
Oakland (4-6) also shook up its coaching staff this week in attempt to salvage its playoff hopes. The Raiders are the only team in the NFL without an interception, and they rank last in the league with six takeaways. As a result, the team fired defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. and named John Pagano as his replacement.
Pagano served as the San Diego Chargers' defensive coordinator before the team moved to Los Angeles, and he was a Raiders defensive assistant this year.
"Everybody felt it in this building," Raiders safety Reggie Nelson told the San Francisco Chronicle. "Players, we love Norton regardless. Unfortunately, the production wasn't at a high standard this year. ... My experience with coach Pagano, it's all been good. We shouldn't skip a beat 'cause he's been in that room all year."
The Raiders trail the first-place Kansas City Chiefs by two games in the AFC West, and they remain optimistic that they can make a playoff push in the season's final six games. The top reason for optimism is quarterback Derek Carr, who has an 88.2 passer rating this season with 2,191 passing yards, 14 touchdowns and eight interceptions.
Wide receiver Michael Crabtree serves as Carr's top target with 42 catches for 502 yards and six touchdowns. Meanwhile, veteran tight end Jared Cook has hauled in 41 passes for 535 yards and one touchdown.
On the ground, Marshawn Lynch has amassed 390 yards and four touchdowns for Oakland.
"We need to hold up our end of it as an offense," Carr said. "Everything that we want, everything that we planned and put out as a goal is out there for us. If we can just get hot and get on a run, I'm sure the bandwagon will get full again and all those things. It's definitely possible. There's no doubt in our mind that we can do it, but we have to go out there and do it."
Broncos linebacker Von Miller will try to do what he can to spoil Carr's optimism. Miller leads Denver's defense with eight sacks to go along with one forced fumble, two pass break-ups and 34 tackles in 10 games.
On the opposite side of the ball, Lynch will aim to rejuvenate a Denver offense that has failed to score 20 points in seven of its last eight contests. Lynch passed for 497 yards, two touchdowns and one interception in 2016.
Running back C.J. Anderson leads Denver with 573 rushing yards and two touchdowns, but second-year player Devontae Booker could carve out a bigger role against the Raiders. The Broncos are led in the receiving game by Demaryius Thomas, who has 53 catches for 633 yards and three touchdowns despite the quarterback carousel.
Strangely enough, the Broncos' most recent win was against the Raiders in Week 4 on Oct. 1. Denver grinded out a 16-10 victory as Carr was knocked out of the game with a back injury.
Now, both teams are hoping that a new coordinator can fix old habits.
"I just felt we needed a change," Raiders coach Jack Del Rio said this week. "It wasn't comfortable. It wasn't easy. In fact, it was very difficult to do. At the end of the day, I felt like I had to do it to give us a spark, give us a chance. I had to shake things up."
The Raiders are 2-3 at home this season; the Broncos are 0-4 on the road.
VDB Free Betting Prediction: Raiders 27, Broncos 23
Denver Broncos vs Oakland Raiders VDB Sport Betting Odds and Matchup Report
Denver Broncos vs Oakland Raiders VDB Betting Odds
|Denver Broncos||+4½ (-115)||+180||43 (-110)o|
|Oakland Raiders||-4½ (-105)||-220||43 (-110)u|
|Name||Record||Home||Away||ATS||ATS Home||ATS Away||Offense||Defense||Diff|
|Name||Record||Home||Away||ATS||ATS Home||ATS Away||Offense||Defense||Diff|
Betting Odds Trends
|Denver is 0-5 ATS in its last 5 games|
|Denver is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games|
|Denver is 0-5 ATS in its last 5 games on the road|
|Denver is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games on the road|
|The total has gone OVER in 4 of Denver's last 5 games on the road|
|Denver is 6-2 ATS in its last 8 games when playing Oakland|
|Denver is 10-2 SU in its last 12 games when playing Oakland|
|The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Denver's last 5 games when playing Oakland|
|Denver is 5-1 ATS in its last 6 games when playing on the road against Oakland|
|Denver is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games when playing on the road against Oakland|
|Oakland is 1-6-1 ATS in its last 8 games|
|Oakland is 2-6 SU in its last 8 games|
|The total has gone OVER in 4 of Oakland's last 6 games|
|Oakland is 7-3 SU in its last 10 games at home|
|The total has gone OVER in 8 of Oakland's last 10 games at home|
|Oakland is 2-6 ATS in its last 8 games when playing Denver|
|Oakland is 2-10 SU in its last 12 games when playing Denver|
|The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Oakland's last 5 games when playing Denver|
|Oakland is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games when playing at home against Denver|
|Oakland is 1-5 SU in its last 6 games when playing at home against Denver|
|Emmanuel Sanders||WR||Prob Sun - Ankle - 11/23/17||Sanders is nursing an ankle injury but is expected to suit up Sunday against the Raiders.|
|Aqib Talib||CB||Prob Sun - Shoulder - 11/24/17||Talib is battling a shoulder injury but is expected to line up against the Raiders on Sunday.|
|Domata Peko Sr.||NT||Ques Sun - Illness - 11/25/17||Peko Sr. has come down with an illness and his status is unclear for Sunday's matchup with the Raiders.|
|Adam Gotsis||DE||Ques Sun - Ankle - 11/22/17||Gotsis has an ankle injury and it is unknown if he will suit up against the Raiders on Sunday.|
|Shane Ray||LB||Ques Sun - Wrist - 11/22/17||Ray is dealing with injuries to his wrist and ankle, leaving his status against the Raiders on Sunday in question.|
|Jeff Heuerman||TE||Ques Sun - Knee - 11/21/17||Heuerman missed the last game with a knee injury and it is unclear if he will play Sunday against the Raiders.|
|Menelik Watson||T||I-R - Foot - 11/8/17||Watson has a foot injury and has been placed on the injured reserve list.|
|Corey Nelson||LB||I-R - Elbow - 10/21/17||Nelson has been placed on the injured reserve list with an elbow injury.|
|Billy Turner||G||Ques Week 15 - Hand - 10/17/17||Turner is on the injured reserve list while recovering from surgery to repair a broken hand and it is uncertain if he will be activated December 14 against the Colts.|
|Jared Crick||DE||I-R - Back - 9/17/17||Crick is on injured reserve due to a back injury.|
|Carlos Henderson||WR||I-R - Thumb - 9/2/17||Henderson is on injured reserve due to a torn left thumb ligament.|
|Billy Winn||DE||I-R - Knee - 8/13/17||Winn has been placed on the injured reserve due to a torn ACL.|
|Chad Kelly||QB||I-R - Wrist - 11/6/17||Kelly is on injured reserve while he recovers from a wrist injury.|
|Jake Butt||TE||I-R - Knee - 11/6/17||Butt has been placed on the injured reserve list as he is recovering from offseason surgery to repair a right ACL tear.|
|Marshall Newhouse||OL||Prob Sun - Hip - 11/25/17||Newhouse missed the last game with injuries to his hip and quadriceps but is expected to be active for Sunday's contest against the Broncos.|
|Cordarrelle Patterson||WR||Ques Sun - Hip - 11/24/17||Patterson is limited by a hip injury and it is unknown if he will line up against the Broncos on Sunday.|
|Johnny Holton||WR||Ques Sun - Concussion - 11/23/17||Holton is in the league's concussion protocol and his status is unknown for Sunday's matchup with the Broncos.|
|Gabe Jackson||G||Ques Sun - Ankle - 11/23/17||Jackson is nursing an ankle injury, leaving his status unclear for Sunday's game against the Broncos.|
|Cory James||LB||Ques Sun - Knee - 11/23/17||James has a knee injury and his availability against the Broncos on Sunday is in question.|
|David Amerson||CB||Out Sun - Foot - 11/25/17||Amerson sat out his fourth-straight game due to foot and shoulder injuries. He will not return against the Broncos on Sunday.|
|Aldon Smith||LB||Out indefinitely - Suspension - 8/2/17||Smith remains suspended for an undetermined amount of time for violating the league's substance-abuse program.|
|Antonio Hamilton||CB||Ques Week 14 - Knee - 10/14/17||Hamilton has been placed on the injured reserve list with a knee injury is it unclear if he will return December 10 against the Chiefs.|
|Gareon Conley||CB||I-R - Shin - 11/13/17||Conley has been designated for the injured reserve list due to lingering shin splints.|
|Sebastian Janikowski||K||Ques Sun - Back - 11/21/17||Janikowski has been placed on the injured reserve list with a back injury and it is unknown if he will be activated prior to Sunday's game against the Broncos.|
|Denver Kirkland||G||Ques Sun - Leg - 11/21/17||Kirkland has landed on injured reserve due to a leg injury and it is undetermined if he will be activated against the Broncos on Sunday.|
|10/1/17||OAK (10) - DEN (16)||-3.5/44||DEN/U||298||143||155||254||24||230|
|1/1/17||OAK (6) - DEN (24)||-1/40||DEN/U||349||143||206||221||57||164|
|11/6/16||DEN (20) - OAK (30)||-1/44.5||OAK/O||299||33||266||397||218||179|
|12/13/15||OAK (15) - DEN (12)||-6/43||OAK/U||310||34||276||126||27||99|
|10/11/15||DEN (16) - OAK (10)||5/44.5||DEN/U||297||43||254||288||65||223|
|12/28/14||OAK (14) - DEN (47)||-16.5/49||DEN/O||451||142||309||199||67||132|
|11/9/14||DEN (41) - OAK (17)||12.5/50.5||DEN/O||471||118||353||222||30||192|
|12/29/13||DEN (34) - OAK (14)||10/53.5||DEN/U||458||124||334||255||64||191|
|9/23/13||OAK (21) - DEN (37)||-16/48.5||P/O||536||164||372||342||49||293|
|12/6/12||DEN (26) - OAK (13)||10/47||DEN/U||428||140||288||324||61||263|
Denver Last 10
|11/5/17||@ PHI||L 23-51||7/41||L/O||-193||-162||-31||-2.5||-3.5||-2.9|
|10/30/17||@ KC||L 19-29||7/42||L/O||88||98||-10||0.7||2.7||-1.0|
|10/22/17||@ LAC||L 0-21||-1/41||L/U||9||-11||20||-0.0||0.6||-1.0|
|9/24/17||@ BUF||L 16-26||-3.5/40||L/O||94||36||58||1.2||2.6||-1.2|
Oakland Last 10
|11/5/17||@ MIA||W 27-24||-3/44.5||P/O||-16||-2||-14||0.1||-1.7||2.5|
|10/29/17||@ BUF||L 14-34||2/47||L/O||36||-112||148||0.7||-0.6||0.3|
|10/1/17||@ DEN||L 10-16||3.5/44||L/U||-44||-119||75||-0.1||-2.9||0.6|
|9/24/17||@ WAS||L 10-27||-3.5/53.5||L/U||-344||-84||-260||-4.5||-1.0||-8.8|
|9/10/17||@ TEN||W 26-16||2.5/49.5||W/U||9||14||-5||0.2||-0.8||1.6|