It should be a pretty interesting atmosphere tonight for the first regular-season NFL game in Las Vegas with a full house of fans at Allegiant Stadium – otherwise known as the Death Star – as the Raiders host the Baltimore Ravens to conclude Week 1. The Silver & Black could be without Pro Bowl running back Josh Jacobs due to an illness, with Kenyan Drake the next man up if Jacobs sits. Baltimore is -4 on the NFL odds. Click here for model pick on game.
Jacobs, the former first-round pick out of Alabama, was a limited participant in practice last week due to a toe injury and an illness. It's not clear whether the illness is COVID-related, although for what it's worth the Raiders are reportedly 100 percent vaccinated. Jacobs was downgraded to questionable on the injury report Sunday. He rushed for 1,065 yards and 12 touchdowns last season on 273 carries while catching 33 balls for 238 yards.
Las Vegas signed Drake in free agency this offseason from the Cardinals. Last season, Drake posted career highs in carries (239), yards (955) and touchdowns (10), while also adding 25 receptions for 137 yards in 15 games with 13 starts. Raiders starting left guard Richie Incognito also will sit. Second-year player John Simpson will make his third career start.
Few teams have been hit harder injury-wise, though, than the Ravens as they lost Pro Bowl cornerback Marcus Peters and running back Gus Edwards to season-ending injuries last week. No. 1 running back JK Dobbins had suffered a season-ending injury earlier than camp. First-round wideout Rashod Bateman and fellow receiver Miles Boykin are both on the injured list. Defensive end Derek Wolfe is out Monday, while linebacker Daelin Hayes and cornerback Jimmy Smith are both questionable.
Baltimore has won its past five Week 1 games and covered the spread in each -- the Ravens have won the past four by at least 20 points. That's the longest NFL Week 1 streak of its kind in history. The Raiders have won three straight Monday night games. QB Derek Carr is 11-6-2 ATS in his prime-time NFL career. Counterpart Lamar Jackson is 6-2 ATS in prime-time games.
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