Baltimore Ravens (2-2 SU, 2-2 ATS) vs. Oakland Raiders (2-2 SU, 2-2 ATS)
NFL Week 5
Date/Time: Sunday, October 8th, 4:05pm EST
Where: Oakland Coliseum – Oakland, CA
by Bob, NFL Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: BAL +2.5/OAK -2.5
Over/Under Total: 39
Sunday at 4:05pm, there is an AFC showdown between the Baltimore Ravens and the Oakland Raiders. Baltimore will travel to the west coast to play in Oakland and try to get their third win of the season. Both teams come in at 2-2 and both teams also are coming into this game on a two game losing streak.
At this time, the line has the Raiders as a 2.5 home favorite over the Ravens while the total points are set at 39 combined. As of Wednesday morning, 58% of the action is on the Oakland Raiders to cover the spread while 53% think the total points will go under 39 combined. Against the spread this season, both teams are 2-2 just like their overall record. This game is going to be a difficult one to gauge but lets see what we can do.
Oakland came into 2017 with extremely high expectations. Last season, Derek Carr was having an MVP type year before he got injured in the final weeks. Now, this year, the Raiders looked good coming in but in the last two games they not only lost, but they did not even look competitive. And of course, the elephant in the room… Carr is hurt again. Originally it seemed that Carr would miss almost six weeks with a broken bone in his back but he is already back at practice in rehab and the time away may not be as long as we thought at first. This week though, the Raiders will look towards EJ Manuel to take the snaps against Baltimore. In his time last week against Denver after Carr went down, Manuel passed for 106 yards and an interception on 11 for 17 passing. Manuel did not look horrible and now he has had a week to prepare to be the starter against the Ravens.
The key this week for the Raiders will be to get Marshawn Lynch going to get pressure off of EJ Manuel. Lynch has shown flashes of the player he once was but has not yet inserted himself as a dominant back that can carry the load on his own. This week he needs to step up. As for the Oakland defense, they have played well all season. Against Baltimore, the Raiders must take the pressure off the offense. If this game becomes a shootout, it will not bode well for Oakland. This one needs to stay in the low 20s at the most in order for the Raiders to survive and move to 3-2 on the young season.
Baltimore started the season 2-0 after wins over the Bengals and Browns. Since that 2-0 start though, the Ravens have been dominated by the Jacksonville Jaguars and then again by the Steelers. A win over the Raiders would stop the bleeding and help Baltimore get back on track in 2017. I would like to be able to point to one aspect of the Baltimore Ravens that is the reason for their two bad losses, but it is the whole team. The defense cant stop anyone and the offense is sputtering right now. Something as to give at some point if this team plans to improve and make any sort of push down the stretch.
The key to this game for the Baltimore Ravens is to stop the run game of Oakland and force EJ Manuel to win the game with his arm. Manuel is a good athlete and a serviceable back up, but he is not the guy that can put a team on his shoulders and carry them to a win…he just isnt.
This is going to be a close game. I think it stays low scoring and comes down to the final moments. In this one, I just like Baltimore. Although Joe Flacco has not played well this year, I have confidence that in this game he will come out on top and avoid the mistakes that would cause the Ravens to lose. I think Baltimore wins this game something like 19-14
Bob’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: TAKE THE BALTIMORE RAVES +2.5. Bet this game and all of your wagers at a sportsbook that lets you bet at discounted odds (-105 instead of -110), thatoffers live in game betting and that has the biggest variety of wagers (including high school football betting). Oh, and they offer FAST no hassle payouts as well! —> 5Dimes!