Sunday Night Football – New England vs Baltimore Betting
Headline: AFC Elite Meet in NFL Game of the Week – Patriots vs. Ravens in Week 3
Two teams coming off shocking losses attempt to rebound on Sunday when the New England Patriots, losers at Arizona in Week 2 travel to Baltimore to take on the Ravens who dropped their Week 2 game to the Eagles. One of these teams will be 1-2 after this weekend – nobody could have seen that coming!
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New England Patriots (1-1) vs. Baltimore Ravens (1-1)
Date/Time: Sunday, September 23, 2012 8:20 PM ET
Venue: M&T Bank Stadium
Patriots vs. Ravens Betting Lines from betonline.com
Spread: Ravens -2 1/2 (-125)
Moneyline: Patriots +125: Ravens -145
Over/Under: 49 1/2 points
The New England Patriots are 1-1 but are a botched Steven Gostkowski 42 yard field goal attempt in the waning moments of their Week 2 game away from a perfect 2-0 record.
Still, the Pats are nowhere near the form that most expected this year. Now New England faces a week without one of their top receiving options – Aaron Hernandez who was lost to an ankle injury in their Week 2 loss.
That said the Pats still have Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski and Wes Welker who appears to be lost in the shuffle that is Bill Belichek`s offense.
While the passing game has looked somewhat out of sync so far the Patriots may have found a threat at running back – Stevan Ridley has looked terrific so far this season making the Patriots multi-faceted on offense for the first time in quite a while.
Where the Patriots are improved this season is on the defensive side of the ball. They somehow have the second ranked overall defense in the NFL – allowing just 62.5 yards on the ground. Brandon Spikes, Chandler Jones and company are young, they are athletic and they are suddenly one of the most complete units in the league. New England with a defense is a scary thought for the rest of the league for sure!
The Baltimore Ravens, like the Pats will have a bad taste in their mouths ahead of their Week 3 matchup. They experienced an uncharacteristic meltdown in the second half of their game against the Eagles last week on their way to a shocking loss.
Joe Flacco came down to earth a bit after a sensational Week 1 performance and only passed for 232 yards, 1 touchdown and one interception with one force fumble on the day against Philadelphia. Ray Rice gained a combined 152 yards in Week 2 but now faces a New England defense that has been very tough on opposing running backs so far.
The Baltimore defense has been just OK so far this season. They are generating turnovers but they are giving up some yardage – 125 yards per game on the ground is uncharacteristic for this team. Still with Ray Lewis and Ed Reed, they will be a challenge for Brady and the boys.
Betting Prediction: If you aren`t looking forward to this game there is something wrong with you! Two solid teams – each with chips on their shoulders. There are not too many times that you will see New England as an underdog however – my though is that you have to take advantage when you get the chance.
New England has been a tad underwhelming but I think Rob Gronkowski looked at the tape of Brent Celek`s 8 catch, 157 yard performance from last week and becomes the difference in the game.
Sunday Night Football Pick: New England Patriots +2 1/2