Seth Udinski, FISM News
The NFL opening weekend concluded with a prime time matchup on Monday night between the Baltimore Ravens and the Oakland Raiders.
The game was a thriller, as Las Vegas QB Derek Carr threw a touchdown to WR Zay Jones in overtime to cap a 33-27 win. The Raiders capitalized on a devastating fumble by Baltimore’s’ former MVP quarterback Lamar Jackson in the extra frame, setting up the winning score.
The game was a wild back and forth affair as the Raiders came back from an early two touchdown deficit and Raider kicker Daniel Carlson made a 55-yard field goal attempt with two seconds left in regulation to push the game into overtime. The game was the first regular season game to be played in front of fans in Las Vegas history as the Raiders moved from Oakland last year, and all of last season’s games were played in an empty stadium.
Las Vegas is one of the premiere franchises in the NFL but has suffered in the 21st century. After returning to Oakland in 1994 from Los Angeles, the Raiders became consistent contenders under head coach John Gruden. Gruden was fired in 2001, and the following season he led the Buccaneers to a sound defeat of the Raiders in Super Bowl XXXVII. The Raiders suffered numerous losing seasons, and in 2011 the franchise lost its iconic owner, Al Davis, who died at the age of 82. The team left Oakland for a second time in 2020, after rehiring their former coach Jon Gruden to a massive ten-year deal. Raiders fans are hopeful Gruden can bring them back to the Super Bowl.
Meanwhile, Baltimore looks to Lamar Jackson to lead them to another title. The team has made the postseason in each of the last two years, but never made it past the second round.