Monday Night Football: LA Chargers at Cincinnati Bengals
This is a weird pick, I know, but there is logic behind it. Sure, I could have picked opponents such as the Pittsburgh Steelers, Baltimore Ravens, Cleveland Browns, or New England Patriots. If the Chargers do indeed get three primetime games, I think it will be a lesser opponent on Monday for multiple reasons.
First is that those other teams are going to have games on Monday Night that aren’t the Chargers. The Ravens and Steelers will probably play each other on Sunday Night, the Browns could play the Chiefs or a team like the Packers, the Patriots should get the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on primetime.
The other reason is that the NFL likes to diversify Monday Night Football to an extent. This had led to some really ugly Monday night games that we shake our heads at, but this is a chance to give a primetime game to a team that likely won’t get a Sunday Night Football game, such as the Cincinnati Bengals.
The game writes itself. The two best quarterbacks from the 2020 NFL Draft squaring off for the first time. The Chargers got the best of the Bengals the year prior, but that was with Tyrod Taylor under center, not Justin Herbert.
It is in Cincy, which gives them a chance to have a home primetime game because their Thursday Night Football game will likely be a division matchup on the road.
It is a fun enough game with a fun narrative that is going to be entertaining that also allows two “smaller” teams to be showcased on ESPN.