With a slate of NFL games shifting to Saturday, enjoy an AFC North matchup Saturday afternoon as the Baltimore Ravens (9-4) take on the Cleveland Browns (5-8). The Browns will host this one at FirstEnergy Stadium, with kickoff scheduled for 4:30 pm ET.
Currently sitting first in the division, the Ravens are coming off of back-to-back wins, including a 16-14 win over Pittsburgh last weekend. In the win, running back J.K. Dobbins did most of the damage as he rushed for 120 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries.
For Cleveland, they came out on the losing side last week as the Bengals beat them 23-10. As he looks to knock off the rust, Deshaun Watson threw for 276 yards, a touchdown, and an interceptions. He also rushed six times for another 33 yards.
The Browns come into this one as the favorite playing at home. They are -156 to win, while the Ravens’ moneyline sits at +132. The spread features Baltimore +2.5 (-104), and the over/under for total points is 38.5.
Ravens Still Without Star Quarterback
It might be odd to see that the Ravens are the underdogs in this one, but a big reason for that is the absence of star quarterback Lamar Jackson, who is out with a knee injury. While backup quarterback Tyler Huntley is probable for this game, he is coming off of his own injury after leaving last week’s game with a concussion.
Assuming he is able to play, Tyler Huntley will look to build off of his early performances. In parts of three games, he has thrown for 275 yards, no touchdowns, and an interception. To be successful, Baltimore will need more out of the 24-year-old.
Like last week, don’t be surprised if there is a heavy dose of the ground game in this one for Baltimore. In five games, J.K. Dobbins has rushed 50 times for 243 yards and two scores. He was brilliant last week and will look to duplicate that success Saturday.
As a result of the uncertain offense, Baltimore will really have to lean on their defense. This season, they currently rank eighth in scoring defense, allowing just 19.2 points per game to opponents.
Browns Looking For Improvement With Watson Under Center
After missing most of the season due to his suspension, Deshaun Watson will now be starting his third game of the season Saturday. With high expectations surrounding the highly-paid Watson, the Browns will hope to see their offense improve on their 23.1 points per game (ranked 13th in the NFL).
In his first two games, Watson has thrown for 407 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. He has also rushed 13 times for 54 yards.
The best target for Browns’ quarterbacks this season has been veteran Amari Cooper. In 13 games, he has a team-high 63 receptions for 874 yards and seven touchdowns. It is worth noting that he has been dealing with an oblique injury, but he is probable for this contest.
On the ground, the leading rusher for the Browns is Nick Chubb. He has eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark, having rushed for 1,153 yards and 12 touchdowns in 13 games.
Defensively, the Browns rank 27th in the NFL, allowing an average of 24.8 points per game.
Take Baltimore And The Points
It is hard to trust either side in this one. For the Ravens, their offense just seems flat without Lamar Jackson under center. In the last two games, they have scored a combined 26 points.
On the flip side, their defense has been solid as they won both of those games, having allowed a combined 23 points. This could be a huge factor as Cleveland’s offense has lacked explosion as Watson gets back into the swing of things.
Reflected by the over/under of just 38.5, this could be a low-scoring affair. For that reason, trust the best defense, which, in this case, is the Ravens.
Take Baltimore +2.5 (-104).