Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 4/19/12
For the first time since 2007, the Cincinnati Bengals will square off against the Baltimore Ravens in a “Primetime” Monday Night Football game on September 10 at 7pm. With all the excitement from the release of the NFL schedules, fans get to see two of the premier teams in the league such as the Bengals and Ravens make that Monday Night debut at M&T Bank Stadium.

For the past two seasons, the Baltimore Ravens has only lost one game at home during their two-year stretch of making it to the playoffs in back-to-back seasons. Just last week Joe Flacco informed the entire football nation that he considers himself one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. Last season, Joe Flacco seemed a bit inconsistent at times during the season which lead to the “rumbling” Ray Rice to carry the team into the playoffs when Flacco did not display elite leadership ability. Playing in the AFC North should change a player’s mentality when stepping onto the field because of the amount of smash-mouth football that is going to be taking place for the next 60 minutes.

If Flacco wants to prove that he is one of the best  quarterbacks in the league, he will have to display a significant amount of leadership ability, with also the benefit of performing in “crunch-time” situations during the Monday Night season opener. It will not be easy though, he will be facing the youngest defense in the AFC in the Cincinnati Bengals on that night. Andy Dalton and AJ Green will have their chance to shine and show the nation how special their combination is going to be for years to come. The Bengals' offense will have to click on all cylinders for this ball club to come out of M&T Bank stadium with a “W”. Joe Flacco beat the Bengals in both meetings last season by edging them out in the fourth quarter. How bad does Andy Dalton and the rest of “Who Dey Nation” want it, is the big question? Many say that if the Bengals can map out a win against the Ravens, they can realistically start their season off with a 6-0 start before playing Pittsburgh before their bye week. Andy Dalton and Joe Flacco respectively almost had the same QB rating with Dalton having an 80.4 and Flacco scoring a 80.9 from last season. This game will be a defensive battle for both teams, but each quarterback will have to play at a high level for their team to come out on top. Who will it be, Cincy? Or B-More? 



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