Monday Night Football begins its 2021 season slate in Sin City as the Las Vegas Raiders host the Baltimore Ravens in primetime to finish up the Week 1 schedule.
It also allows Vegas football fans to check out their new home as Allegiant Stadium will host spectators for the first time ever after its debut season was held behind closed doors due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
They aren’t expected to fare all that well in 2021, especially in a loaded AFC West division that includes the two-time conference champion Kansas City Chiefs along with the Denver Broncos and Los Angeles Chargers — a pair of teams that took noticeable steps forward over the last calendar year.
Therefore, the Ravens are expected to walk to an opening-night victory. After all, Lamar Jackson is one of the most dynamic signal-callers in the NFL, leading a team that made it to the AFC Divisional Round last year.
But Baltimore is plenty hobbled, losing starting running back Gus Edwards and Pro Bowl cornerback Marcus Peters on Thursday as the onslaught of injuries continues. Edwards was stepping in for J.K. Dobbins, who went down with a season-ending knee injury.
Still, the Ravens are favored to beat a Vegas team that had one of the worst defenses in football last year, especially when it comes to pressuring the quarterback. A unit that took the opposing quarterback down just 21 times last year tried to bolster its ranks this offseason, bringing on Yannick Ngakoue along with linebackers K.J. Wright and Denzel Perryman.
That likely won’t be enough to stop Jackson, meaning Derek Carr and the Raiders offense will have to try and keep up with one of the more explosive talents in the league. That’s a dangerous game to play.
Ravens at Raiders, Week 1 MNF Odds
- Spread: Ravens -4
- Over 50.5 total points: -115
- Under 50.5 total points: -105
- Ravens Moneyline: -210
- Raiders Moneyline: +175
Odds courtesy of DraftKings