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Ravens favored to start season with road win

The Baltimore Ravens look to start the season off with a primetime victory on Monday night in Las Vegas. This is step one for the Ravens as they look to keep pace with an increasingly competitive AFC North.

With the Steelers and Bengals picking up Week 1 wins, and the Browns playing the Chiefs close, it's clear the AFC North is here to play this year. That means the Ravens have to take these opportunities to beat the teams they should. That's exactly what they have in front of them in Week 1.

Odds

The Ravens head into their Week 1 matchup as one of the biggest road favorites in the NFL. They're 4 point favorites to win the game, and they're given -190 odds to win the game outright. At -190, the Ravens have an implied 65.5% chance to win. The -4 point spread is a little misleading on its own, as home teams are often given 3 points simply for having home field advantage.

So, it's without a doubt safe to say that the Ravens are really massive favorites to win the game given that they're playing on the road. As they should be, as a playoff team facing a team that hasn't finished over .500 since 2016.

Matchup history

The Ravens and Raiders have met 12 times in their history. The Ravens have won 9 of those games. Even in their 3 losses, the games were all within 1 score.

It's certainly fair to say the Ravens have dominated this matchup. Their average win total is 15 points. Of their 9 wins, only 3 of them were 1 score games, and 2 of those game before 2000.

Conclusion

No Week 1 game is a must-win, but that's almost what this feels like. When you're in an ultra competitive division, as the AFC North appears to be every game matters. That's especially true when you're taking on an opponent that you are supposed to beat.

Well, this is one of those games, and that makes it all the more important. Have to win the ones that you're supposed to.

The opinions posted here are those of the writer of this article. They are in no way official comments from the team, the editors of this site or SB Nation as a whole, and should not be misconstrued as such.