Bengals vs Ravens Prediction, Odds, Pick | NFL Thursday Night Football
Getty Images. Pictured: Joe Burrow (left) and Lamar Jackson.
Bengals vs Ravens Prediction, Odds, Pick
The latest Bengals vs. Ravens odds have Baltimore laying 3.5 points on Thursday Night Football to open our slate of NFL Week 11 picks. The over/under has gone between 46 and 46.5, with money pouring in on the over.
On the injury front, the Bengals will be without wide receiver Tee Higgins (hamstring) and edge rusher Sam Hubbard (ankle), while the Ravens will be missing left tackle Ronnie Stanley (knee) and cornerback Marlon Humphrey (calf).
Let's make a Bengals vs. Ravens prediction and break down this Thursday Night Football Matchup.
Bengals vs Ravens Prediction
When the Bengals Have the Ball
Joe Burrow has been on fire of late and appears to be over the calf injury he was dealing with earlier in the season. He has thrown for multiple touchdowns in five straight games and more than 340 passing yards in two straight games.
Tonight, Burrow will still be without his No. 2 WR in Higgins, which isn’t ideal heading into a tougher divisional matchup against a Ravens defense that ranks second in DVOA.
Former Ravens defensive coordinator Wink Martindale used to still bring his blitz-heavy approach against Burrow, who would make Martindale pay. New DC Mike Macdonald has had a much better approach, dialing back his blitz rate when facing Burrow. It’s held Burrow in check in their three meetings as he’s gone (217 passing yards/1 touchdown/1 interception), (242/2/0) and (222/2/1) against them since the start of last season.
Ravens cornerback Marlon Humphrey is expected to miss the game with a calf injury. It’s a pretty big blow to the Ravens secondary as it faces one of the better passing offenses in the league.
Cornerback Rock Ya-Sin has played well in limited action this season and could step up here in Humphrey’s place. Arthur Maulet and Ronald Darby will also see an uptick in snaps because of the injury.
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When the Ravens Have the Ball
Left tackle Ronnie Stanley has been ruled out. Typically this would be a massive blow to the Ravens offensive line, but he hasn’t been quite as dominant this season as he has in past years. Stanley has already allowed six more pressures than he did all of last season (in five more games). Patrick Mekari will replace him and has done an excellent job filling in when needed at left tackle.
For the Bengals, Hubbard has been ruled out, which is a big blow to the Bengals run defense and pass rush.
The Bengals have been a run-funnel defense this season, ranking 12th in DVOA against the pass and 29th against the run. That’s going to be an issue when facing a Ravens team that ranks first in Rush DVOA. The Bengals specifically have struggled to slow down QBs in the running game, allowing the fourth-most yards per game to the position, which is also less than ideal for this matchup against Lamar Jackson.
The Ravens also have a developing weapon in the run game in Keaton Mitchell, who managed 66 total yards on just four touches last week. Head coach John Harbaugh has already mentioned that he plans on giving Mitchell more work moving forward.
Bengals vs. Ravens
Betting Picks & Predictions
I like the Ravens here, specifically in the first half. They typically get off to hot starts, only to let their opponent come back a bit later in the game. We saw this last week when they went up 14-0 early on the Browns, only to lose by two.
In fact, Baltimore has only trailed for 28 minutes on the season total, which is by far the lowest rate in the league. The Ravens should be much better than a 7-3 record, but they struggle to finish games well. The Bengals, on the other hand, are a team that's good at making in-game adjustments on both sides of the ball.
The Ravens, for the sake of this bet, are 8-2 against the spread in the first half.
I like the idea of taking the Ravens -1.5 in the first half since the most likely outcome is they're up by exactly three points at halftime. For the full game, I’m less comfortable with taking them -3.5 since the most likely result is also that they win by exactly three.