The Las Vegas Raiders take on Baltimore in Week 1 on Monday night, and they are catching the Ravens at the perfect time.
Looking to finally get over the playoff hump, the Las Vegas Raiders will open their 2021 campaign against a perennial playoff team in the Baltimore Ravens. Armed with one of the more electrifying quarterbacks in the NFL, the Ravens have the talent to make a serious run this season, but they could end up getting off to a slow start.
While Lamar Jackson will be under center when Baltimore invades Allegiant Stadium, he will be without a bunch of his weapons on offense, something that plays in the Raiders’ favor. Not only are Myles Boykin and Rashod Bateman out at wide receiver, but Marquise Brown could be a bit rusty, and running back J.K. Dobbins is out for the year.
Yes, Brown will play, and Gus Edwards is an outstanding backup to Dobbins, but if you are going to go up against this elite offense, is this not the best time to do it?
Raiders getting the Ravens at the perfect time
The Raiders have revamped their defense in a big way this offseason, adding talent on all three levels, including some impact players like Yannick Ngakoue, Casey Hayward, Tre’Von Moehrig, and recently, linebackers Denzel Perryman and K.J. Wright. Looking at the depth on that side of the ball, this is the best group of players we have seen in the Silver and Black on defense in quite some time, but they will be tested by Jackson in Week 1.
Weapons or no, this is a guy who can flat out get it done with his arm, and his legs, and he will likely take it as a personal mission to put this offense on his back and lead them to a road victory in primetime. If the Raiders are to take the next step as a defense, they cannot let that happen, and I believe that they have the players on that side of the ball to stop Baltimore, especially with so many players out.
The Las Vegas Raiders needed an overhaul on the defensive side of the ball, and the front office did a nice job accomplishing that this offseason.
Of course, this is Lamar Jackson, a former Most Valuable Player who has put this Ravens offense on his back in the past. Las Vegas is trying to change the narrative when it comes to the defense, and stopping Jackson, even with limited weapons, would send a message to the rest of the league that things could be changing in the desert.