By Matt Furtado/KHTK Sports 1140

There are two signs that the NFL season is close.

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First sign, the NFL draft is just over a week away.

Second sign, the schedules for every team were released on Tuesday.

Rosters aren’t even close to being set, but now it’s time to break down the week to week predictions and set your expectations for the football season.

The Oakland Raiders had yet another poor performance last season, but the development of young players such as Derek Carr and Khalil Mack give hope to the Raider Nation for a better upcoming season.

The San Francisco 49ers, on the other hand, are moving in the opposite direction. The 49ers off-season, so far, has been one of many good-byes. The loss of Head Coach Jim Harbaugh, All-Pro Linebacker Patrick Willis and the franchise leader in rushing Frank Gore leave many doubts for the 49er Faithful.

So, let’s break it down.

Oakland Raiders:

The Raiders have made a lot of improvements over the off-season by bringing in free agents such as Wide Receiver Michael Crabtree, Linebacker Malcolm Smith and Center Rodney Hudson.

The team also brought in Bay Area native Jack Del Rio to coach the team.

Carr was arguably the best quarterback to come out of the 2014 draft. A lot of the team’s success will depend on how much of an improvement the young quarterback can make in his second season.

Although the Raiders play their first two games at home, it’s going to be a rough two weeks to start the season.

The team will host the Cincinnati Bengals and Baltimore Ravens on September 13 and 20 which will start the team on a two game skid.

The Silver and Black should bounce back in weeks three and four on the road in Cleveland and Chicago. The Browns and Bears both have turmoil at the quarterback position as well as many other questions throughout the roster.

The reigning AFC West Champion Denver Broncos will come into Oakland  week five before the bye week in week six.

After the bye week, the Raiders have a few winnable games against the New York Jets, Minnesota Vikings, and Tennessee Titans in weeks eight, 10 and 12.

The most intriguing part of Oakland’s schedule is their last five games of the season.

Four out of the last five games will be against AFC West opponents including a Thursday Night Football match up against the San Diego Chargers on Christmas Eve. The Green Bay Packers are the only non-AFC West team in the last five games, and will be tough to beat.

Depending on how the Raiders finish in the last five games can be a big determining factor in where they finish in the division.

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With all that said, now it’s prediction time!

The Raiders will improve from last season.  It would be hard not to with the growth of young players and the acquisitions in the off-season, but the team will still finish below the .500 mark.

A realistic outcome for the Silver and Black would be a record of 6-10. The wins coming against the Browns, Bears, Jets, Vikings, Kansas City Chiefs, and Chargers.

Yes, it is still a disappointing finish, but the team is on the up and up.

San Francisco 49ers:

The 49ers open up their season at home against the Minnesota Vikings on September 14. It’s always good for the psyche of the players and fans to start the season off with a win, and the team has a good chance to make that happen.

They then have a tough stretch of games in weeks two, three and four. San Francisco will go on the road to face the Pittsburgh Steelers and Arizona Cardinals, followed by a home game against the Green Bay Packers.

Three playoff teams in three weeks will equal a three game losing streak for the Jim Tomsula lead 49ers.

It will get a bit easier in week five when fly to the other side of the country to face the New York Odell Beckhams (AKA the Giants).

The Niners then have another tough stretch of games in weeks six, seven and eight. They face the Ravens and the Seattle Seahawks in San Francisco, followed by the St. Louis Rams on the road.

The first half will be tough for San Francisco. There looks to be just a few winnable games in the first eight weeks.

The Niners should bounce back with a win in week nine against the Atlanta Falcons before San Francisco’s bye week in week 10.

The hardest part of the 49ers schedule is just the fact that they have to play each team in the NFC West twice. The Seahawks and Cardinals have shown to be two of the best teams in the NFC over the past few seasons and the Rams are no joke with a great defense and improving offense.

San Francisco has a lot of question marks on the offensive side of the ball and you can count on every defense in the NFC West to exploit it.

It will be yet another decrease in wins for the Niners in the upcoming season.

A record of 7-9 is very likely from the team that finished at .500 last year with a record of 8-8.

The wins will come against the Vikings, Giants, Falcons, Cardinals, Bears, Browns, and Rams.

The 49er Faithful will not be happy with the outcome of the season and will forever hold a grudge against General Manager Trent Baalke for being the primary reason that Jim Harbaugh left San Francisco.

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