Las Vegas Raiders Kick Off 2021 NFL Season on Monday Night Football as Underdogs

Posted on: September 13, 2021, 07:43h. 

Last updated on: September 13, 2021, 12:00h.

The Las Vegas Raiders kick off their 2021 NFL season tonight inside their Allegiant Stadium home against the visiting Baltimore Ravens. However, most bettors are riding on Baltimore, not the underdog Raiders.

Las Vegas Raiders odds NFL Ravens
Las Vegas Raiders coach Jon Gruden leaves the field at Allegiant Stadium during a preseason game on August 14, 2021. Tonight, the Raiders begin their 2021-22 NFL season against the Baltimore Ravens. (Image: Las Vegas Review-Journal)

The general spread consensus for tonight’s 8:15 pm ET kickoff has the Ravens spotting the Raiders four points. Those who like Las Vegas can grab slightly better odds at FanDuel, as the book currently has the Raiders as 4.5-point dogs.

The over/under is at 50.5 points. Baltimore’s moneyline is -200, implying a winning chance of 66.67 percent. A winning $100 bet on that line nets $50. The Raiders’ moneyline is +170. A winning $100 bet nets $170, but the line implies a winning chance of only 37.04 percent.

ESPN’s Matchup Predictor, which simulates the game 20,000 times, gives Baltimore a 57.2 percent chance of leaving Vegas 1-0. The Ravens have won their previous five season openers, outscoring their opponents by an astounding 177-26 in those games.

Raider Nation Arrives

Tonight marks the official start of the Raiders’ second season in Las Vegas. But for many fans, it’s the true beginning.

Because of the pandemic, the 2020-21 season was played without fans in Las Vegas, a decision that was made by the team. Davis said he thought it wasn’t fair to allow some fans to attend home games while others were prohibited. That position extended to him, as Davis also sat out attending games at Allegiant Stadium.

The NFL made the decision that the first eight rows of fans wouldn’t be able to attend the games,” Davis said at the time. “That meant 8,000 Raider PSL (personal seat license) holders for the inaugural season wouldn’t be able to attend the first game. That hit me really hard, and I felt at that time that if one fan couldn’t go, then I don’t know if any fan should be able to go.”

Tonight, Raiders Nation finally arrives in Las Vegas. Allegiant Stadium’s 65,000 seats are sold out, and casinos on the nearby Strip are expected to benefit from the influx of midweek visitors.

One such visitor is Davis himself. The man worth an estimated $500 million was recently spotted playing a slot machine at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas — the former Hard Rock.

TMZ Sports says Davis and a female companion got lucky on the machine, winning $1,800 on a Wheel of Fortune slot.

NFL Welcomes Sports Betting

Prior to the landmark 2018 Supreme Court decision that gave states the power to dictate their own laws on sports betting, the NFL had long shunned Sin City. Team owners, however, greatly changed the league’s stance on March 27, 2017, when all but one voted in favor of allowing the Oakland Raiders and team owner Mark Davis to relocate to Southern Nevada.

The SCOTUS ruling resulted in legal sports betting expanding across the country, as well as the NFL initiating a relationship with the casino industry. With sports betting laws passed in more than two dozen states, the NFL, ahead of the 2021-22 season, designated seven sportsbooks as official sportsbook partners. The courtship allows them to advertise during nationally televised NFL broadcasts.

Fans who watched Week 1 games yesterday were besieged with commercials from the seven permitted — DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, Caesars Sportsbook, FOX Bet, PointsBet, and WynnBET.