With Monday Night Football quickly approaching, the Las Vegas Raiders are slated to upset the Baltimore Ravens by CBS Sports.
The 2021 regular season’s quickly approaching for the Silver and Black. Following a change-filled offseason, their first test out of the gate will be a difficult one. New defensive coordinator Gus Bradley and his unit will be tasked with stopping Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson.
While the task will be a difficult one, it won’t be completely impossible. John Breech picks the Raiders to pull off the upset in his recently published NFL Week 1 picks. One of the first things that Breech points out is the ‘home-field advantage‘ that Las Vegas will have. After not having fans in attendance last season, the team went 2-6. Having Raider Nation within the confines of Allegiant will help, but is that enough?
It’s all about the defense…
Loud fans will help but in order to pull off the upset, the Raiders’ defense will have to win the day. We’ve seen how serious the organization has been about addressing its biggest weakness. Several players including Tre’von Moehrig and Nate Hobbs were drafted back in April. Via free agency, Las Vegas added Yannick Ngakoue and within the last week or so, both Denzel Perryman and K.J. Wright were acquired.
With the players in place, it falls on Bradley to put together a game plan that’ll result in a win against the Ravens. Luckily for Raiders fans, he’s done it before when he was with the Los Angeles Chargers as Breech pointed out.
‘In that game, which the Chargers won in an upset, Bradley befuddled Lamar Jackson and the Ravens by putting seven defensive backs on the field for most of the game. That’s not to say that Bradley will do this again, but he’s one of the smartest defensive minds in football, he’s already schemed a plan to slow down Lamar once and he’s had all offseason to figure out how to do it again.’
No doubt Raiders fans are hoping that Bradey can pull it off again. Breech’s closing line sums up just how important this game will be, if ‘the Raiders do pull off the upset, Mark Davis should go ahead and give his new mansion to Bradley.‘
*Top Photo: Heidi Fang/Las Vegas Review-Journal