After a 2020 season in which the Las Vegas Raiders played one wild game after another, their first game of the 2021 season was another rollercoaster — this time in front of fans at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas for the first time.
Let’s look at some keys to the game:
Raiders are 1-0. The Ravens are 0-1. It’s the first time since 2002 that all four AFC West teams started 1-0.
What it means:
What a great team win for Jon Gruden’s team. Wild stuff.
Former Raiders’ running back Latavius Murray, who signed with Baltimore on Friday after a glut of injuries to Ravens’ running backs, made it a 24-17 game with 6:04 remaining in a game that the Raiders had tied 17-17 after being down 14-0 in the first half. The Raiders came back again, however, with a Derek Carr-Darren Waller touchdown pass-catch to tie game at 24-24 with just over three minutes to go.
Then a Justin Tucker field goal with 37 seconds was the dagger for Baltimore ... but no, the Raiders came back with a couple of clutch plays from Carr and then kicker Daniel Carlson nailed a 55-yard field goal to send the game to overtime. Then Bryan Edwards struck. With a great grab on third down on the first drive to set up a game-winning .... but no. A Willie Snead drop caused an interception to keep this drunk game going. Thankfully a huge turnover gave the Raiders life and Carr hit Zay Jones for a touchdown to finally win this game.
Starting right guard Denzelle Good went down on the first drive of the game with a knee injury. He was replaced with recent signing Jermaine Eluemunor, who was a key backup for the New England Patriots last year. Good returned early in the second quarter, but left again.
Defensive end Yannick Ngakoue left late in the game with a hamstring injury, while new Las Vegas defensive tackle Gerald McCoy was taken off the field in cart in the fourth quarter. He was immediately ruled out with a knee injury. That is not good.