Oakland Raiders vs. Minnesota Vikings: NFL Preseason Week 1 Betting Odds and Predictions

Oakland Raiders vs. Minnesota Vikings
Friday, 8/8/14, 8:00 PM EST
Opening Point Spread:  Minnesota PK
Current Betting Line:  Minnesota -3
Opening Total:  36.5
Current Total:  38
Odds Courtesy of 5Dimes

Vikings Bills NFL Preview
Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson will likely sit out the entire preseason

Oakland head coach Dennis Allen certainly has his best roster entering his third year on the job, but with an upcoming schedule that ranks the toughest in the league—expectations will need to be tempered in the early going.  The Raiders will start former Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub under center, which is important to consider when making your NFL predictions, while rookie Derek Carr is expected to land the No. 2 spot on the depth chart at the position.  The running game figures to be the team’s strength early on with Maurice Jones-Drew and Darren McFadden leading the way.

The Raiders’ pass rush will have a new look in this matchup that will take place at TCF Bank Stadium, with Antonio Smith, Justin Tuck and LaMarr Woodley combining for 21 sacks with different teams in 2013, which will result in a boost from Oakland’s mediocre total of 38 as a team a year ago.  All eyes will be focused on No. 5 overall pick Khalil Mack, who has been compared to Denver Broncos star Von Miller in his ability to disrupt opposing offenses.

Minnesota has one of the more intriguing quarterback battles in the league, with Matt Cassel expected to play a few series—followed by rookie Teddy Bridgewater potentially playing up to two quarters.  The Vikings won’t have the luxury of handing the ball off to running back Adrian Peterson, who hasn’t seen action during the exhibition season since 2011—something to consider when looking over the NFL betting lines.  Now that offensive coordinator Norv Turner has arrived, Peterson expects the unit to be less predictable than previous years.

The Vikings have plenty of question marks on the defensive side of the football, especially in the secondary due to the potential of both starting safeties remaining on the sidelines for this affair.  Minnesota also has numerous problems at the cornerback position, which is bad news for a group that’s looking to rebound from allowing more points than any team in the NFL during the 2013 campaign.

Sports bettors will likely play the total in this affair, as both teams will take to the air with new quarterbacks needing to gain experience.

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