The Baltimore Ravens' Opening Monday Night Football Game Breakdown

By Connor Harrison

One week from today will be the opener for Monday Night Football with the Baltimore Ravens playing the Cincinnati Bengals at M&T Bank Stadium, which is the Ravens stadium if you didn’t know. This will be a heck of a game to kick off MNF.

The fans’ prediction give Baltimore a slight edge, and I mean ever so slightly since it’s almost dead even. Joe Flacco out threw Andy Dalton last year by about 300 yards. They had the exact same number of touchdowns at 20 each. Once again, on the ground, Ray Rice gained around 300 more yards than the Cincinnati’s running back Cedric Benson, but both hit the 1000 yard mark last season.

The Ravens’ top receiver in Anquan Boldin had better average yards per catch, 15.6 yards, than the second best receiver on the Bengals, Jerome Simpson who had 14.5 yards per catch. Although Torrey Smith didn’t have the yards that Boldin did, he averaged 16.8 yards every reception. On the other side of the field, A.J. Green of the Bengals averaged just under Smith’s receiving average, with 16.3 yards every catch.

That’s just on the offensive side of the ball. Overall, the Raven’s offense out gained Cincinnati’s offense by about 20 yards each game. Passing yards per game favored Baltimore ever so slightly, and rushing favored the Ravens also by a little bit more than passing, but still, not so much.

Baltimore’s defense has historically been good, and last year was no different, they were obviously better than the Bengals’ defense.

It should be a good game nonetheless, as it usually is. After all, it is a conference rivalry game. Not as much of a rivalry as the Pittsburgh Steelers and Ravens games are, but that rivalry is one of the most notorious in the NFL.

The Ravens’ stadium isn’t an easy one to play in, they have a very dedicated fan base and M&T Bank Stadium can get pretty loud. I don’t know about you, but I’m excited to watch that game.

To wrap things up the Ravens defeated the Bengals both times they played last year. I think the edge should favor Baltimore more since my prediction is that the Ravens will win this game, even if it comes down to the wire.

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