In years past, the NFL has held doubleheaders on the opening Monday night of the football season. With one game in an Eastern or Central time zone location and another on Pacific time, the league got an extra few hours of eyeballs on its product to start the year.
2021 is a different animal, however, as the league has pared down Monday Night Football to just one game in week one. Tonight’s contest will find one of the AFC’s top teams over the past few years, the Baltimore Ravens, out West in the desert to take on the Las Vegas Raiders.
Baltimore has made the playoffs in three straight seasons since Lamar Jackson arrived in the NFL, but they have won just one postseason game in that time. The Raiders, meanwhile, have not made it to the postseason since 2016, when they went 12-4 and finished in second place in the AFC West. To make matters worse, that year was their only playoff appearance since advancing to the Super Bowl in 2002.
The Ravens are dealing with a critical mass of injuries on their roster, however, particularly at running back. Arguably the team’s top three runners headed into training camp are sidelined with season-ending injuries, as J.K. Dobbins, Gus Edwards, and Justice Hill are all done for the year. That leaves the Ravens with Ty’Son Williams and Latavius Murray (just signed this week) as primary runners, with Le’Veon Bell and Devonta Freeman also just signed to the practice squad. Additionally, starting cornerback Marcus Peters tore his ACL in practice this week, leaving Baltimore without one of its most important defensive players.
Who will move to 1-0 in this AFC battle? Tune in tonight to find out.
Baltimore Ravens vs. Las Vegas Raiders
Las Vegas, Nevada
Monday, September 13, 2021
5:15 PM Pacific Time (8:15 PM Eastern)
TV Channels: ESPN & ABC
Commentators: Steve Levy, Brian Griese, Louis Riddick, Lisa Salters
Online Streaming: NFL app, Yahoo! Sports app, ESPN app
Radio Broadcast: Westwood One Sports, Sirius 81/83, XM 225/226