The Oakland Raiders will host the Los Angeles Rams in the finale of Week 1’s Monday Night Football double-header. Kickoff is set for 10:15 EST at the Coliseum and will be televised on ESPN.

Oddsmakers currently have the Rams listed as a 4-point road favorite with the total set at 49.5 points. Click here for a full look at our Week 1 betting schedule, which includes more links to our game previews.

NFL Betting Preview & Game Odds: Rams vs Raiders

No one really knew what to expect when the Rams hired Sean McVay as their new head coach. It turns out they struck gold. McVay, known for his offensive mind, completely turned around the Rams offense in 2017. After finishing dead last in the NFL in both scoring offense (14.0 ppg) and total offense (262.7 ypg) in 2016, McVay guided LA to a league-best 29.9 ppg.

It resulted in an 11-5 record, Rams first NFC West title since 2003 and first trip to the playoffs since 2004. While they would go on to lose 13-26 at home to the Falcons in the Wild Card round, many believe that was just the start of something great. The hype around this team grew even stronger after an offseason that saw them add corners Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib, as well as defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh.

Los Angeles will try to not have a letdown like the Raiders had in 2017. Oakland went into last season with lofty expectations after their 12-4 record in 2016. Their first winning season since 2002. It didn’t carry over, as the Raiders finished a mere 6-10.

Head coach Jack Del Rio was fired and that opened the door for Oakland to hire John Gruden. As soon as Gruden was hired their was a buzz around this team, but the air was let out a bit when they couldn’t reach a deal with All-Pro linebacker Khalil Mack, who they recently traded to the Bears. It’s anyones guess if the Raiders are legit contender in 2018.

NFL Free Pick & Betting Predictions: Rams -4

This is one that I will likely being staying clear of, as this feels like a sucker bet, but I don’t know how you take the Raiders in this spot. We have seen numerous times where the obvious side doesn’t deliver in these Week 1 games on Monday Night Football. Which is why I would hesitate backing the Rams. With that said, there’s no doubt in my mind that LA is the more talented team.

Click on the link for more free NFL picks against the betting spread and total.

The big concern with the Rams is just how focused they will be out of the gate. A lot of the starters didn’t play in the preseason and all everyone has been doing is talking about how good this team is going to be. If you don’t take your opponent seriously in this league, you are going to get beat, especially on the road.

With that said, there’s also the possibility that the Rams come to play and are every bit as good as advertised. The biggest thing for me is I just don’t know how the Raiders are going to stop LA’s offense after trading away by far their best defensive player. I see no reason to think the Rams offense won’t be every bit as good as it was a year ago. In fact, it should be better, as the players now have a much better understanding of McVay’s system.

The other key thing in this matchup is how the Raiders, or any team for that matter, block the Rams duo of Aaron Donald and Ndamukong Suh. These are arguably the two best pass rushers in the game. Teams are going to have to use all their resources up front to contain these two and that’s going to make life that much easier on the other 9 guys on the field. If Oakland can’t figure it out, they are going to have a hard time scoring and I just don’t know how they keep this close if they can’t put the ball in the end zone.