Older AFCE

AFC North Week 11 Predictions

AFC North Week 11 Predictions
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Bengals past vs present Who will be congratulating whom Sunday night?
 
 
 
Welcome to the AFC North predictions page!
 
Each week, our AFC North feature writers will list their picks for that week and be forced to explain why they voted as they did. Keep in mind that these picks are for entertainment purposes only, and in no way should be used to influence gambling or illegal activity, unless you’re smart enough to recognize that we know more than you because we publish things.
 
Week 9 AFC North games:
St. Louis Rams (4-5) @ Baltimore Ravens (2-7), Sunday 1pm FOX
Cincinnati Bengals (8-1) @ Arizona Cardinals (7-2), Sunday 8:30pm NBC
 
Bengals/Cardinals gets the AFC North game of the week honors with little competition. If football fans don’t tune in to watch two division leaders, they will tune in to see which Bengals team will show up. Speaking of reasons to tune in, the Ravens/Rams game could be like stopping for a train wreck, and fans may want to tune in to see what new method the Ravens will use blow this one.
 
Last week the writers took a big step back as for some reason three of four took the Ravens, two actually thought the Browns would win in Pittsburgh, and none of the four were willing to accept that the old prime-time Bengals would post this year. After doing the math, that’s works out to a 3-9 week 10.
 
On to the games:
 
 
Jack Crawford (record 18-14):
 
Rams 27, Ravens 17
The Rams have assembled a talented defensive corps, which will be the difference in a game featuring two subpar offenses. Expect the Rams to continually pressure Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco into making his now-routine 1-2 crucial mistakes per game, with wunderkind Rams running back Todd Gurley carrying the Rams offensively.
 
Bengals 31, Cardinals 28
In a matchup of Bengals QBs past v. present, present should win on the strength of their offensive and defensive lines. Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer will be harassed all day by the Bengals’ improving pass rush, which will prove the difference. Expect more timing and short patterns from the Bengals offensively as they look for ways to circumvent the Cardinals’ secondary.
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Paul Johansson (record 18-14):
 
Rams 20, Ravens 23
Rams running back Todd Gurley has taken a step back over the last couple of weeks including a just 45 yards against the Bears D, which hasn’t exactly been stout against the run over the past few years (and 26th this season). The Rams also cannot win on the road out-of-conference with zero wins this year, and only two last year (against hapless Washington and Tampa). What they do have going for them is a quarterback trying to make an name for himself, and what better way than to play against the Ravens secondary. Unfortunately that QB is Case Keenum, who has a difficult time hanging onto the ball. If the Ravens DBs can sneak in some stick-em, they should be able to celebrate their third win.
 
Bengals 17, Cardinals 27
If the Bengals win this game, it will be due to their defense and special teams a la the primetime game vs Denver last season. My gut tells me that Dalton and company will struggle on offense again in Arizona as they did last week and two weeks prior. If this prediction was based on talent alone position-by-position, the Bengals should win easily. Although Dalton and the Bengals have passed mental tests throughout this season, a primetime game after recent struggles will be the ultimate test so far. Until they prove otherwise, I’ll take the opponent.
 
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Michael Thompson (record 18-14):
 
Rams 14, Ravens 17
Rams new quarterback Case Keenum is no great shakes and the Rams offense was not exactly prolific when Nick Foles was in there. Todd Gurley continues to run well, but unless he has a truly remarkable performance, the Rams will not be able to put up enough points to top the Ravens.
 
Bengals 17, Cardinals 31
Bengals continue their mid-season slide with a road game against what might be the most balanced team in the NFC. Carson Palmer gets some small measure of revenge against the team that barely bothered to try the entire time he was there and only started to put a roster together once he was shipped off to Oakland, using the booty they received for him to begin that process.
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Wernike Korsakoff (record 13-19):

 
Rams 24, Ravens 17
Newly-named Rams QB Case Keenum will look to unstoppable RB Todd Gurley often. Keenum will only have to deliver a few key throws here and there against a weak Ravens secondary. The Ravens’ offense running game will struggle to get anything going, facing a strong front seven from the Rams. Look for a few big plays to keep the Ravens in the game.
 
Bengals 27, Cardinals 34
Both teams have strong defensive units, but strange things happen in primetime. The Cardinals and Bengals have a bevy of talent on offense, which will be on full display in the desert. Look for a key turnover later in the game to be the deciding factor.
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“League Sources” (3-4):
 
Hibernating for the winter

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