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- Time: 8:20 pm ET
- Location: Baltimore, Maryland
- TV: NBC
- Weather: High of 57°, clear sky, no precipitation, 3 mph winds
After getting swept by them last season, the high-scoring Ravens are looking to take on the Bengals for the first time this season, at home in front of their fans. It should be a good rivalry game between teams that are legitimately competing for their division title this year.
The Bengals started the season really rough. They turned the ball over five times in the season opener to the Steelers and then they struggled to get their offense going against the stacked Cowboys defense.
However, the Bengals have managed to put up 27 points in each of their last two games and come out with a victory in each. They still have issues they need to address—namely their offensive line—but they have steadily gotten better as the young season has progressed.
As for the Ravens, it’s all about offense, Lamar Jackson has 13 total touchdowns, and their team averages 29.8 points per game. Unfortunately for them, their defense hasn’t quite held up their end of the bargain, they’ve allowed 25 points per game and 437.8 yards per game as well. They’ve had a particularly hard time in the clutch, as opponents have converted 7-9 fourth downs.
Bengals (+3) at Ravens (-3) Spread Pick
Even if we follow the trend of the Bengals playing marginally better each and every week and assume they play better than they did against the banged-up Dolphins last Thursday, they still would be outmatched this week.
The Ravens defense showed a lot of improvement last week as they held the dominant offense of the Bills to just 23 points after giving up 79 combined points over the two previous weeks. This combined with an electric offense run by the leading scorer in the league, (Lamar Jackson-13 TDs) should be enough to win this game, but can they beat the spread?
The Bengals defense has been quite impressive, after all, they were able to keep them in that five-turnover game against the Steelers through pure defensive strength alone. They’ve given up only 17.5 points per game and are the fourth-best team in the league at stopping the run. However, they have yet to play an offense with a dynamic running threat like Lamar Jackson. Last time they faced him, he ran for an easy 84 yards.
The Bengals easily won both of their 2021 games against the Ravens, blowing them out 41-17 and 41-21 respectively. I think the opposite happens here. I’ve got the Ravens winning by double digits.
Spread Pick: RAVENS –3
Bengals at Ravens (O/U 47.5) Total Prediction
The Ravens are a team that gets into a lot of high-scoring games. 7 of their 17 games last year had a total point score over 50, and now this season they’ve started out with 2 of their first four games totaling over 50 points.
They particularly drive the score up against the Bengals, as the two teams racked up a whopping 120 points against each other over their two matchups last season.
There is nothing to show me that this game will be any different. The Bengals offense struggled early, but they have too much talent on that side of the ball to keep them from scoring on the Ravens defense that has given up the third most yards per game so far this season.
The Ravens have had a hard time in recent matchups to get much going against the Bengals defense that is having a good season this year giving up only 17.5 points per game, however, those numbers don’t tell the whole story.
The competition the Bengals faced in the first four games has been fairly weak, and the last time these two teams played, it was without Lamar Jackson, so don’t expect the same results that we saw last season where the Bengals defense snuffed out the Ravens offensive production.
Total Pick: OVER 47.5 points
Bengals at Ravens Moneyline Prediction
I’m pretty confident that the Ravens are going to win this one. They’ve played really well despite some devastating close losses, and the Bengals are still trying to figure out their offensive line. But what I’m not as confident on is whether they can beat the spread.
If I were to give you my confidence level, the moneyline would be at about 85%. My confidence in the spread pick would be closer to 60% maybe 65%.
The moneyline is a safer bet (if you trust me and pick the Ravens) but the spread has a bigger payout, so it really depends on what type of bettor you are. I personally am a very modest and conservative bettor, I would go with the moneyline on the Ravens instead of the spread, but I understand that I may be kicking myself on Sunday Night after Lamar Jackson scores seven touchdowns in a blowout.
At the end of the day, the Ravens are a good bet, whether it be the moneyline or the spread. They showed they are legit by hanging with the dominant Dolphins and Bills, as well as beating the rest of the AFC East (Patriots and Jets) by modest margins. This is a good team that is ready to ball out in Primetime
Moneyline Pick: Baltimore Ravens
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