The time has come, ladies and gentlemen. This Sunday the Las Vegas Raiders travel to face off against the Carolina Panthers in the most uncertain opener in either team’s history. No one can really know what possibly to expect, but I have a hunch.
The Las Vegas Raiders will start their season in a conservative manner. Raiders fans have been upset with head coach Jon Gruden and his unwillingness to take risks with a more downfield attack. What Jone Gruden knows and some fans still do not is that they don’t actually have a franchise quarterback. Derek Carr looks more and more like his older brother with each passing season.
The Raiders’ best bet is to minimize mistakes with vanilla play calling and methodically try to wear down the Carolina Panthers defense. This may work, as the Raiders do have one of the best offensive lines in football. Throw in the fact that the Carolina Panthers have one of the most inexperienced defenses in the league and the proposition of slow and steady becomes more attractive. Turnovers could lose this game for the Raiders, best not to risk it.
The strength of the Carolina Panthers is on offense, which is very strange to say out loud. What was once a defensive franchise has done a near complete 180. Teddy Bridgewater is a superior quarterback to Derek Carr in all respects. The triple threat of Christian McCaffrey, DJ Moore, and Robby Anderson is more fire power than the Raiders can offer.
The Panthers best bet on offense is the exact opposite of the Raiders. Forget conservative, use your dynamic weapons like they should be used. There is no pressure on this team to win as it is a complete rebuild year. Offensive coordinator Joe Brady might as well put the foot on the gas and really see what the offense is capable of.
If the Carolina Panthers offensive line can at least resemble a NFL caliber unit, the Panthers win this game. I think they will.
Carolina Panthers 31
Las Vegas Raiders 27
Agree? Disagree? You can discuss this and everything Carolina Panthers right here.