SOURCE: Cooper's Pick

September 10, 2012 16:59 ET

Monday Night Football Picks Week 1: Raiders vs Chargers and Baltimore Ravens vs Cincy Bengals

BALTIMORE, MD--(Marketwire - Sep 10, 2012) - The first game of the Monday Night Football season kicks off tonight. There are two featured games: the first being on the east coast where the Baltimore Ravens face off against the Cincinnati Bengals and the other being on the west coast where the Oakland Raiders play the San Diego Chargers.

As of right now the Oakland Raiders are a 1 point favorite according to the latest Las Vegas odds. Experts like Mike Cooper of have been studying these two matchups as he understands the importance of Monday Night Football for both sports fanatics, fantasy footballers, and sports bettors in Europe, Australia, and Las Vegas, Nevada.

The Oakland Raiders have dropped 5 of their 7 last games when they were considered underdogs. The Oakland Raiders are 5-1 against the spread in their last 6 matches against the Chargers. The total also known as the Over Under for the Oakland Raiders / San Diego Chargers game opened up at 47.5 and the line has since moved to 47 while the Baltimore Ravens San Diego Chargers Over Under opened at 41 and has moved up a 1/2 point. The current spread ranges from Baltimore as a 7 to 8 point favorite.

The Raiders have a brand new General Manager, coaching staff, offensive line, cornerbacks, and with GM Reggie McKenzie's help, he plans to turn the Raiders back into a very successful franchise. Tonight's game will be a testament as to how this will turn out. Most sports handicappers and the public are unsure of what side to be on for tonight's game.

Back east in Baltimore, Maryland, the Ravens face off against their division rivals. The game kicks off at 7:00PM Eastern Daylight time. In the 2011-2012 season the Bengals where 8-6-2 against the spread with an O/U of 11-5 while the Ravens were 8-7-1 against the spread with an O/U record of 10-6.

Eyes will be on rookie Andy Dalton tonight who has been playing with a strong offensive line. The Bengals are a little thin in the wide receiver category while the Ravens defense is and has always been seen as a strong threat with Ed Reed and Ray Lewis on the field.

The Ravens will be led by Joe Flacco at Quarterback and star running back Ray Rice. Expect Anquan Boldin and Torrey Smith to be thrown to against Cincy's pass defense which is currently ranked number 9 in the league. 

One thing is for sure about the first week of Monday night football: The games will be exciting and the fans will be enthralled. For a list of all the games make sure to check out the updated 2012 Monday Night Football Schedule that includes matchups, kickoff time, and dates of each and every game this NFL season.

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